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Friday, February 28, 2014

Contesting for the wrong reasons

A debate involving all the candidates in the Kajang by-election is necessary since none have stated how the people will benefit if they are elected.
COMMENT
Kajang ElectionMany have expressed interest in contesting the Kajang state seat but the voters are clueless how the by-election will benefit them other than media attention the constituency is attracting now.
For the average Ali, Chong and Muthu who live Kajang they are excited over the idea of PKR’s de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim being their assemblyman but do know what is in store for them beyond that point.
All the reasons given by the candidates have got nothing to do with the people of Kajang.
The candidates eying the seat seem to have their own personal agendas rather than the interest of the residents.
Reporters from both the local and international media are now in Kajang town like vultures looking for news.
Even Anwar has acknowledged this and mentioned Al-Jazeera and BBC’s coverage in his rounds in Kajang.
Top of the list of candidates is Anwar who is claiming that it is vital for him to contest to secure the Selangor Pakatan government from Barisan Nasional’s political onslaught.
Former Umno stalwart, ex-PKR vice-president and Kita Party founder Zaid Ibrahim has jumped on the bandwagon to prevent Anwar from taking over the position of menteri besar now held by Khalid Ibrahim.
Former dangdut singer Herman Tino is also keen to contest for the same reason as Zaid.
Malaysian Indian United Party president Senator KS Nallakaruppan wants to use the Kajang by-election to expose Anwar’s alleged sexual exploits.
The MCA has meanwhile named party vice-president Chew Mei Fun.
The New Generation Party wants to field a candidate who would bring forth the aspirations of the young in the decision-making process.
Hence, there is a need for the candidates to outline their plans which will benefit the constituents in a debate.
The debate should be held in a venue that can accommodate a large crowd such as Kajang Stadium.
The voters should be allowed to question the candidates on issues affecting Kajang folk.
For impartiality, residents organisations should organise the debate because NGOs have tendencies to support one candidate or another.
The debate will also serve as a platform for all the candidates to indicate how Kajang will benefit if they are elected.
The Kajang debate option is also achievable because Anwar, MCA and Zaid are no stranger to debates.
Anwar debated former Information Minister Ahmad Shabery Cheek in 2008 over the price hike.
Former MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek faced off DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng twice in 2012 on their party’s influence over the Chinese community.

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