PAS kalah kenapa?
On the swing of Chinese votes, he said: “They wanted to teach us a lesson.”
Yesterday’s by-election saw BN candidate Isa Samad trouncing his PAS rival Zulkefly Mohamad Noor with a thumping majority of 5,000 votes.
In view of this, Salahuddin said Pakatan has to review its strengths and performance.
“One of the major factors why the Indian community is divided is because of the internal problems within MIC and the formation of the Malaysian Makkal Sakti Party,” he said.
“In the last (general) election we got strong support from the Indian community… they had no choice, there was no alternative and they had high expectations of Pakatan.
“Now, they are not all for the BN government but I would say that their support is not as solid as it was in the last election (for Pakatan),” he added.
Salahuddin said Pakatan need to be more serious in addressing the woes faced by the Indian community.”Pakatan is not doing enough,” he added.
Surprised by Chinese swing
Meanwhile, Salahuddin said he was surprised that Chinese voters had also turned their backs on Pakatan.
“To some extent a certain percentage might have been influenced by Prime Minister Najib Razak’s ‘1Malaysia’ concept,” he noted.
Salahuddin pointed out that the Chinese community has been keeping a close watch on Pakatan’s progress, especially in Selangor, since the last general election.
“They see that we are not serious in proving our unity with the internal conflicts we have been facing lately,” he said.
“The Chinese wanted to send a clear signal to Pakatan to teach us a lesson,” he added.
However, he stressed that Pakatan was the ‘underdog’ in the Bagan Pinang by-election and the main priority was to change the mindset of the people especially in doing away with corruption.
“That was our main mission, to build a strong case to fight corruption… we may have lost the battle but we will win the war,” he said.
Isa was stripped of his Umno vice-presidency after being convicted of money politics by the Umno disciplinary board in 2005. His six-year suspension was later reduced to three upon appeal and ended in 2008.
It’s not an issue of race
Meanwhile, PKR’s strategist Tian Chua stressed that the issue should not be looked at from a racial viewpoint.
“Usually in rural areas, the people are more susceptible to BN’s money politics. However, it has been proven that such tactics do not work in urban areas.
“It is not race but rather the social economics of the people. The poorer ones are less educated and more susceptible to material gains and intimidation,” he said.
“If we do not curb money politics, BN can buy voters and our system can never be clean. We have to stop thinking in terms of race. The desire for change cuts across racial lines,” he added.
Criticising Isa’s candidacy, Tian asked why BN did not field another candidate if the Bagan Pinang constituency is considered a stronghold for the ruling coalition.
“Why didn’t Najib put someone else who is not convicted of corruption? Najib chose to nominate a friend of his.
“Therefore, it could be seen that Umno has no determination to make credible changes in leadership and we can expect to see the same kind of corrupted leaders,” he added.