Gerakan In The News

Kedah PN to see increase in non-Malay support at state polls, says leader

Apr 19, 2023

ALOR SETAR: Kedah Perikatan Nasional will see a slight increase in non-Muslim support in the coming polls, its deputy chief claimed.

Citing a survey it conducted recently, M Marimuthu said the overarching factor behind the uptick in support was none other than menteri besar Sanusi Nor.

He said Sanusi had been a popular figure ever since taking charge in 2020.

“In the last general election, we had 8% of the non-Malay vote. In the coming state elections, we expect to hit at least 15%,” he told FMT, adding that this was based on a survey the coalition conducted.

However Marimuthu could not provide details of the survey.

He went on to say that PN had won over many people and more were expected to support them as Sanusi has been named the coalition’s poster boy ahead of the state polls.

“He is a likeable and approachable menteri besar, despite concerns over the ban on 4D (gaming),” he told FMT, referring to the PAS-led government’s decision to prohibit the operation of gaming shops in the northern state beginning January this year.

Marimuthu, who is also state Gerakan chief, said despite aspersions cast towards Sanusi, many Kedahans appreciated the fact that the menteri besar was hardworking and brought substantial foreign investments to the state.

He said with close to 4,000 new jobs created in the fourth quarter of last year as a result of Sanusi’s efforts, non-Muslim voters were starting to judge him on his performance as a chief executive of the state.

“After many years without much investment, Sanusi is the only one who ensured foreign investors received their approvals in 10 months under the E10 programme, when even Penang could not do so.”

E10 is a fast-track process dealing with construction permits to ensure work can commence in a specified timeline without delays.

Marimuthu said PN was banking on Sanusi’s popularity to win at least 33 of the 36 seats in the coming state polls, although he did not rule out the possibility of the coalition winning all the seats following its performance in the 15th general election.

PAS has 15 seats in the 36-member state assembly and heads a PN government in Kedah with partner Bersatu (six seats). The opposition, Pakatan Harapan, comprises PKR (five seats), Amanah (four), DAP (two), Umno (two) and Pejuang (two).