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Spinning Isa’s victory

Politician speak

“The results show that the people have the full confidence in our two leaders. It is also a sign that voters, especially the Chinese and Indian [Malaysians], have now returned to support [the Barisan Nasional (BN)].”

“My win is due to a combination of factors. People are now back with BN. They are giving their full support to the leadership of (Prime Minister) Najib and (Deputy Prime Minister) Muhyiddin.”

TAN Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad, after his convincing win in the 11 Oct 2009 Bagan Pinang by-election. Isa garnered 5,435 more votes than PAS’s Zulkefly Mohamad Omar. (Source: Isa: Voters back 1Malaysia concept, New Straits Times, 11 Oct 2009)

“It shows that the people, in the context of multiracial politics, are beginning to appreciate our new policies, programmes and plans incorporated under the concept.

“The result showed that our new policies have been effectively implemented at the national, state and divisional levels.”

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak at a press conference in Penang. Najib said the landslide win would steer the BN to greater heights, and that the BN would regain its old formidable form. (Source: Victory a welcome shot in the arm for BN, says Najib, Malaysiakini, 12 Oct 2009)

“Saya amat gembira. Daripada awal lagi saya telah menjangkakan kita (BN) boleh menang kerana itu kawasan kita. Isa memang kuat di situ dan orang India [berwarganegara Malaysia] juga sokong dia.”

Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. Mahathir had previously warned the BN not to field Isa as a candidate to send a message that Umno was serious about tackling corruption. Isa had been convicted of money politics and suspended for six years. His suspension was commuted to three years, and ended on 23 June 2008. (Source: Kemenangan BN di Bagan Pinang sudah dijangka – Mahathir, Umno Online, 12 Oct 2009)

“A win by Isa would translate into an endorsement of corruption-as-usual within the party and the government that it leads.”

“Corruption is the scourge of the country. Umno is a step away from being identified with that scourge.”

Former Finance Minister Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah on his blog. The Gua Musang Member of Parliament was disappointed that Umno had fielded a candidate who had been proven to be corrupt. The Umno stalwart even said it would be better if Isa lost so that Umno could learn its lesson and begin the process of reform. (Source: Better to lose the battle, razaleigh.com, 11 Oct 2009)

“… Isa’s victory despite his record of Umno money politics would be a clear and unmistakable message that Umno/BN could not be redeemed or reformed to play any meaningful role to cleanse the country of deep-rooted corruption.”

DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang in his blog. Lim said although the BN’s win was expected, the thumping majority was not. Lim said the rout suffered by Pakatan Rakyat (PR) should destroy the myth that the PR was on an invincible path to victory in the next general election. He added that the PR must go back to the drawing board to sort out its internal problems. (Source: PR rout in Bagan Pinang by-election PR must go back to drawing board, Lim Kit Siang for Malaysia, 12 Oct 2009)

“This is a dark day for Malaysia because an icon of corruption has become a representative of the people.”

PAS vice-president Salahuddin Ayub, accepting the decision of the Bagan Pinang voters. Salahuddin also said that although Umno won the by-election, it had lost the fight against corruption. (Source: Isa scores landslide win, majority 5,435, Malaysiakini, 11 Oct 2009)

“Umno semakin selesa dan perlu kekal dalam ‘form’ yang sedia ada (jasad dan ruhnya) sebagai pengamal rasuah yang dominan di Malaysia.”

Mohamed Azmin Ali, Parti Keadilan Rakyat vice-president, in a statement on his blog. (Source:  Apa Signifikan Keputusan Bagan Pinang, Blog Azmin Ali, 12 Oct 2009)


Media speak

“Isa’s win shows Barisan still relevant, say Umno leaders”

(The Star, 12 Oct 2009)

“Bukti penerimaan rakyat – TPM”

(Utusan Malaysia, 12 Oct 2009)

“Tanda rakyat terima 1Malaysia”

(Utusan Malaysia, 12 Oct 2009)

“BN’s victory shows new trend for Govt”

(New Straits Times, 12 Oct 2009)

“1Malaysia lures voters towards BN”

(New Straits Times, 12 Oct 2009)

“A victory for BN or Isa?”

(Malaysiakini, 11 Oct 2009)

“BN wins big in Bagan Pinang”

(The Nut Graph, 11 Oct 2009) 

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