KUCHING: Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) loss to Barisan Nasional (BN) in the Semenyih by-election on Saturday came as no surprise to several Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) leaders.
Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing said given PH’s “lousy track record”, it was expected that the ruling coalition would lose yet again.
“PH’s promises in their manifesto have not been honoured and yet they keep blaming the previous government for their failures to carry out what they’ve promised to the rakyat.
“In the last nine months, what have they done to make a difference compared to what Barisan Nasional has done? Not much and instead, they fight among themselves for position in the government,” he said in a statement yesterday.
The Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president pointed out that the country’s voters elected PH to administer the nation for the better but instead received the short end of the stick.
“Malaysians elected PH to do better and deserve better than bickering among its elected representatives.
“PH should stop blaming the previous government on their failures. Stop being critical all the time and be a practical implementer for the rakyat. Use your brain and not your mouth all the time,” he remarked.
Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Corporate Affairs) Abdullah Saidol shared the same sentiment and opined that PH’s loss in Semenyih was due to the sentiment of the people who are fed up with the lies conjured by the coalition.
“We don’t need a political scientist to come up with complicated analysis and bombastic political jargons to know why they lost Semenyih to Barisan Nasional. The rakyat simply had enough with the rhetoric, uncertainties and weak leadership of PH.
“PH knows very well why they lost in the last two by-elections (Semenyih and Cameron Highlands) and they are probably going to lose in the next by-election in Rantau as well,” he told The Borneo Post when contacted.
The Semop assemblyman said while PH is busy playing political rhetoric and even attacking GPS with all sorts of political slanders and wild insinuations, the state’s ruling coalition is determined to counter attack PH with their “proven deliverables and widespread personal touch services”.
“At the end of the day, the people want to witness who has the ability to walk the talk and who’s bluffing.
“More importantly, they also want to see who is genuinely sincere and more aggressive in defending Sarawak’s rights and interests,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, PBB veteran Dato Peter Minos reckoned that PH’s unfulfilled promises to the people is one of the reasons which turned voters against them during the by-election.
“There are also other factors which caused them to lose in Semenyih such as Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, 1MDB and GST issues no longer being the focus and so the voters decided to turn their guns on PH’s weaknesses and failures.
“Apart from that, PH has created a bad image with their arrogant ministers as well as cases involving fake degrees and silly ideas proposed by some ministers,” he said.
This, he noted, allowed BN to use PH’s “mess and problems” to their full advantage and let the once ruling coalition to win in Semenyih.
“It looks like PH is losing ground and Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad seems unable or unwilling to control his difficult and bad ministers.
“The next by-election in Rantau, Negeri Sembilan is coming soon and PH will surely lose the seat as well.”
The Semenyih by-election on Saturday came as a blow to PH when its candidate Muhammad Aiman Zainali failed to retain the seat against BN whose candidate Zakaria Hanafi garnered 19,780 votes in a four-cornered fight against Nik Aziz Afiq Abdul from Parti Sosialis Malaysia (846 votes) and independent candidate Kuan Chee Heng (725 votes). The PH candidate obtained 17,866 votes.