This evening I spoke to a PKR strategist in Permatang Pauh and he predicts a reduced majority of about 8000-10000 though his party colleague with whom I spoke to earlier had said perhaps a majority of 5000. Anything above 10000 would be a bonus, I suppose, given the reduced turnout expected.
The party strategist said the major issues in this by-election are GST, the higher cost of living and corrupt political leaders.
As I write this, a crowd of about 7000 has gathered for the final PKR ceramah in Seberang Jaya. Among the speakers are a Pas youth leader, Azmin and Rafizi.
— Rafizi Ramli (@rafiziramli) May 6, 2015
Roads leading to the Expo site are badly congested, making it difficult for more people to get there. My contact at Seberang Jaya reports: “A helicopter circled overhead a few times. Mat Sabu made a quiet entrance. He was welcomed by Azmin Ali, who is at the mike now. Fiery speeches from Tian Chua and Rafizi followed by an equally fiery Azmin. All making fun of serious topics of GST, 1MDB, penyelewengan, the lavish lifestyle of you-know-who. Three speakers tonight have common credentials – they’ve been in the lockup. Azmin is talking about his recent visit to Anwar in prison, bringing a message from Anwar to Permatang Pauh folks to “berjuang lagi”. And now he’s announcing Wan Azizah’s arrival. Mat Sabu takes over the mike Lim Guan Eng arrived. Pemuda Pas presented a bouquet of flowers to Wan Azizh for Mother’s Day. Azizah speaking now. The crowd has swelled a bit more. Cars are stopping on the highway nearby – traffic there has slowed down. She is soft-spoken but strongly confident. The ceramah has to end by midnight The rally ended on a high note. All dispersed quietly and the crowd was well behaved. Though there was a massive jam, the situation is under control. Not a single uniformed cop in sight. Earlier, in my neighbourhood, there were three cops standing at the roadside with their motorbikes. But they were just lounging around, just to show a presence. At 9.15pm at Lengkok Tenggiri food court, I passed a BN ceramah. Audience: 30 people. Further down, a Jalan Tenggiri public basketball court, there was a BN-sponsored buffet dinner with a crowd lining up for food but no speeches. What kind of campaigning is this?” Over at the BN side …
– but how many of these are resident voters and how many imported for the campaign?
Blog visitor Awang Selamat Ori reports from Ground Zero:
“Anil, there is no doubt PKR will win and win convincingly!
I was at Petron Jalan Tenggiri where BN and PR have their operations booths opposite each other. As usual, the BN side had nothing to say and no one bothered to listen to them. They were blaring those patriotic songs very loudly, perhaps to disturb the huge presence of PKR supporters and workers.
They were distributing mailers on 1MDB, Altantuya, GST and a lot more. And mind you, I observed out of 10 cars, eight stopped to receive and read the mailers.
Another thing I observed in Permatang Pauh opposite UITM today, was some people (SPR officers?) stopping at a PKR booth and instructing the guys to take down posters with Najib’s face bearing the question, ” Is the GST money meant to pay off the debts of the gomen”?
How funny, PKR putting up Najib’s poster when BN is not doing so! Those were solid big posters and very prominent. Perhaps, Najib’s presence will make Permatang folks love PKR more?
There were convoys of PKR supporters riding in motor bikes, cars, vans, lorries riding along busy roads in Perai, Seberang Jaya, Penanti and Kubang Semang….
And there was an incident where I had my nasi kandar yesterday, at the warung besides the mosque. Some idiots came up to stir trouble saying they are (a) pro ulamak group, and with their loud-speaker said they would not support any party that does not support hudud.
Cerita hari ini, flashmob ahli PAS Permatang Pauh depan Masjid Kubang Semang. Kemudian diasak oleh ahli PKR. pic.twitter.com/aVhHFA4J4V
— Ibdilillah Ishak (@ibdil) May 6, 2015
(But were they really from Permatang Pauh Pas?)
Immediately, they were told to leave by a group of man who had been sitting in the warung. This is a solid Pas area and from their reactions, I can assure you that PKR will win handsomely. Their majority may be reduced but it will be a good win despite all the difficulties and sabotages!
The folks in Kubang Semang love PR well, telling those trying to create a stir, “Leave, this is a solid Pakatan area”! How heart-warming and reassuring!
MCA? MIC? Gelakan? I think these parties should just fold up to save the faces of their founding fathers. There was no reception for them at all. It is indeed a torture for members of these parties to “campaign” for 14 days when there are no listeners or supporters…
It will be a good win for Kak Wan, no doubt about it. In difficult times like this a win of any majority is an achievement, understanding the abuse of many acts against opposition lawmakers by the authority.”