PENANG, 16 April 2009: Penang Gerakan chief Datuk Dr Teng Hock Nan said today the Penanti state seat’s vacancy is a deliberate move by the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) to force a by-election to shore up support to the party.
“The party wants to create a ‘wave’ of support, thinking that they can always win back the seats that their assembly[persons] had vacated,” he told Bernama when asked to comment on the resignation of Penanti assemblyperson Mohammad Fairus Khairuddin today.
Mohammad Fairus, 33, of PKR, who is reported to be under investigation by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Agency, had previously resigned as the Deputy Chief Minister I.
“We feel that the by-election is deliberately planned to gain popularity and support. It is not impossible that something like this will happen again in the future until the next general election,” said Teng.
He reminded the people to be mindful of what he described as a “drama” being played by the opposition parties.
“The people should open their eyes and see what the opposition parties have been doing,” he said, adding that if the opposition parties had been putting the people’s interest first, they would have avoided precipitating a by-election in this time of economic gloom.
“Foreign investors will look at the political situation of a country before deciding on where to direct their investments. If politics is not stable, it will affect their confidence,” he said.
In KEPALA BATAS, Penang Umno secretary Datuk Azhar Ibrahim said the party would leave it to Prime Minister and Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak to decide on the candidacy for the seat.
Meanwhile, Penang PKR chief Datuk Zahrain Mohamed Hashim called on party members to accept any candidate chosen by PKR advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
On talks that he might be fielded by the PKR, Zahrain said, “I am already a member of Parliament (for Bayan Baru) but if that is the wish of the party, then I will abide by it.” — Bernama