Yesterday, a Terengganu Umno state assembly member passed away, paving the way for a crunch by-election.
The BN holds 17 seats in Terengganu to Pakatan’s 15. So if Pakatan wins in the by-election, it will be 16-16 – a hung assembly. In which case, the BN may be asked to show if it can command the confidence of the majority in the assembly.
But first, the by-election …
While some may see Kuala Besut as an Umno-BN stronghold – Umno won here by 2000-plus majorities in the 2004, 2008 and 2013 general elections – it was not always this way.
In 1999, Pas actually won the seat. According to Pas’ Mujahid Yusof Rawa, in 2013, the Pas candidate, Napisah Ismail, lost, partly due to some issues among the electorate over her being a woman candidate.
So yes, this high stakes by-election will be contested with earnest in a state where the BN won 53 per cent of the popular vote to Pakatan’s 47 per cent.