Monday, 24 May 2010

Kit sounds alarm bells for Pakatan campaign

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid | The Malaysian Insider
KUALA KUBU BARU, April 23 — Lim Kit Siang urged his Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalition today to fight for every single vote in the final stretch of the Hulu Selangor by-election campaign, pointing out that Datuk Zaid Ibrahim is now the underdog against Barisan Nasional’s (BN) P. Kamalanathan.
“The red light is on,” Lim told a press conference here this morning, in a tacit admission that PR was now trailing behind BN in the race for votes this Sunday.

Lim (picture) said the campaigning effort in the Malay and Indian majority areas by BN is not to be underestimated.
“According to them, they are in the lead and have more chances to win. This is a critical development.
“I want to set the alarm and urge all leaders to go all out to secure every single vote,” said the Ipoh Timur MP.

In recent days, Umno and BN have stepped up their campaign with even Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak hitting the husting.
On the stump, the prime minister and Umno president has made uncharacteristically aggressive attacks against PR, by calling Zaid a Cabinet reject and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim a two-faced politician.
Umno’s aggressive attacks on Zaid’s character by dredging up his past drinking habit and ownership of race horses have also caused PR to go on the defensive.
In a last-ditch effort to save Zaid’s campaign, Kelantan Mentri Besar and PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat will go on the stump for PR tonight and tomorrow to revive the candidate’s standing among conservative Muslims.
Lim said today that it was now obvious that PR is the underdog in the race to win the parliamentary seat and that its BN rivals have shown great will to snatch the constituency away from the opposition.
He also said that almost all the Cabinet ministers have been making round-the-clock tours in the constituency in what he described as a show of earnestness by PR’s rivals to win this by-election.
Asked if this meant he was pessimistic about PR’s chances of retaining Hulu Selangor, Lim replied:
“No, I am confident we can still win but we must step up in the last leg of the campaign.”
The alarm must also be rung for the voters who are seeking to implement change, and duty calls for them to play a “citizen’s role” to lay the path for a corrupt-free future by rejecting the BN candidate, said the veteran DAP politician.
MCA supporters, which are reported to be 8,000-strong, Lim said, should also reject BN to protest against what he described as the Chinese party’s failure to protect them and being subservient to Umno’s expanding “hegemony”.
Giving examples, Lim said the silence of the MCA amid Umno’s rampant racist practices like Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s “I’m Malay first and Malaysian second” should suffice to prove the BN Chinese component party’s inability to stand up against Umno’s dominance.
“They must in the interest of the people reject the MCA which have completely lost touch with the ground by rejecting BN’s candidate Kamalananthan.”