PN victory maintains status quo - IDE

pn victory maintains status quo - ide

In the context of psychological warfare, the psychopolitical impact provided different moral and motivational guidance between BN-PH and Pas-PN supporters in this by-election. – FILE PIX

DESPITE securing a larger majority compared to the 15th General Election (GE15), the Perikatan Nasional (PN)-Pas candidate’s victory in the Kemaman Parliamentary by-election merely maintains the status quo, according to political research firm Institut Darul Ehsan (IDE).

IDE’s Chief Executive (Research), Khairul Ariffin Mohd Munir noted that the increased majority vote percentage for the PN-Pas candidate compared to GE15 and the four state constituencies during the Terengganu State Election only amounts to one to three per cent.

PN-Pas candidate, Datuk Seri Ahmad Samsuri garnered 64,998 votes, accounting for 45.84 per cent of the total 93,239 voters who turned out to vote.

This represents a slight increase of 2.16 per cent and 1.16 per cent compared to the votes received by the Pas candidate in the Terengganu State Election and GE15, respectively.

“The substantial margin between Samsuri and the Umno-Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate, General (B) Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor, with a lead of 37,220 votes, resulted from a significant drop in votes for the Umno-BN candidate, showing an 8.41 per cent decrease compared to GE15 and 7.41 per cent compared to the Terengganu State Election,” Khairul Ariffin told Sinar yesterday.

He attributed this drop to Pas’ ability to maintain support from PN supporters and the young voter segment, while Umno-BN experienced a decline in voter turnout, particularly among Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) residents.

“As for the voting trend among the Felda residents, Umno-BN lost in all voting district centres involving Felda areas.

“However, for the non-Malay voter segment, estimated at over 14,000 voters, their votes remained predominantly in the hands of Pakatan Harapan (PH), which is aiding the BN candidate at present, as was the case during GE15,” he said.

Interestingly, Khairul Ariffin observed that the Umno-BN candidate managed to bring out their loyal voters, albeit experiencing only about a three per cent decline compared to previous by-elections.

However, a significant 12 per cent of fence-sitters did not shift their support to PN, indicating that they either chose not to vote or supported the Umno-BN candidate.

Meanwhile, another political research organisation, O2 Research Malaysia, pointed out that the BN-PH coalition experienced the most significant decrease in voter turnout compared to PN.

The organisation’s Chief Researcher, Anis Anwar Suhaimi, stated that the BN-PH coalition lost 40.7 per cent of its votes compared to GE15.

“This scenario is different for PN, which received 64,998 votes in this by-election compared to 65,714 votes in GE15, merely recording a loss of 716 votes, or less than one percent.

“Several factors contributed to PN’s significant victory in this instance, such as the effectiveness of the party’s efforts in engaging voters, the efficiency of the Terengganu government’s machinery in addressing people’s issues, and the failure of the BN-PH machinery to play a more effective election campaign.

“Most importantly, Samsuri’s popularity is significantly higher compared to the BN candidate, as people feel the state government’s assistance through his leadership has reached grassroots levels compared to the previous government,” he added.

Moreover, in the context of psychological warfare, the psychopolitical impact provided different moral and motivational guidance between BN-PH and Pas-PN supporters in this by-election.

With significant PN victories since GE15 and with 2023 state elections added, many Umno supporters feel that the challenge of winning is becoming increasingly difficult.

The strong influence has also made some of them uninterested in turning out to vote.

“Finally, national issues related to the 3Rs (race, religion, and royal institutions), especially cooperation with the DAP, have played a role, burdening any Malay-based party from establishing a foothold, especially in Terengganu.

“This was worsened by statements by Tan Sri Lim Kit Siang regarding a non-Malay Prime Minister released in the days leading up to the voting,” Anis further added.

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