Tuesday, July 7, 2009

MANEK URAI | PAS' or UMNO's worry beads?

The nomination of competing candidates for the Manek Urai Bye-Election, Kelantan, safely tucked away and nicely completed on 6th July, 2009, will now pave the way for intense campaigns. Two candidates Mohd Fauzi Abdullah (PR-PAS) and Tuan Aziz Tuan Mat(BN-UMNO) will now vie for the N41 Manek Urai, seat of Dewan Undangan Negeri, Kelantan scheduled for polling on July 14. Mohd Fauzi also goes with the catchy local nickname of Abe Uji.

What's at stake for this bye-election? Not the State of Kelantan now under PAS with Tok Guru Nik Aziz as the Ketua Menterifor the last umpteen years. On the national perspective, there has been the contoversy of the Unity Talks which more or less has been buried but for UMNO leaders who seem frantically resuscitating it. On the ground it appears it's largely a "nasi and sambal" (bread and butter) issue.

Lata Rek Waterfall, Manek Urai/ Kuala Krai
Pix Credits |Waterfalls of Malaysia

Manek Urai has a population of some 30,000 and almost all are Malays with perhaps some 100 Chinese and a few Indians and others. The average income of rubber tappers in the area is RM850 and it appears to be the only major source. Of the total 12,293 registered voters in the consituency, 5,598 are youths under 40 years of age. Apart from perhaps a little local tourism at Lata Rek Waterfalls, there's little reports of other economic activity in the area.

The seat was held by UMNO in 2004, whose ADUN had 53 votes majority. Thereafter it went to PAS to Ismail Yaacop who won it in 2008 with a wide margin of 1,353 votes. He had passed away recently prompting this bye-election. If the 2008 victory is an indicator it could have been the youths who tipped the down the dacing. Then, the cry of reformasi and change were loud and clear and if the tipping over was so caused, what will keep the seat for PAS?

Prime Minister Najib had twice dismissed a debate with Tok Guru Nik Aziz. This spectre has been result of the furious condemnation amongst both PAS and UMNO youth members over the Unity Talks and had recriminations tore across the divide of BN and PR and flogged the internet bandwith. UMNO is grappling for unity of some sort from among the BN coalition partners which had been reeling from the various corruption charges and the hotly disputed takeover of Perak. It seems strange though that UMNO is looking from its long maligned rival PAS for the vigor. The immidiate fallout of this seems to be the absence of PAS' Deputy President, Nasharuddin Mat Isa a proponent of the Unity Talks, from the bye-election campaign scenes. Observers note that even the Party President posters are not out yet and claimed to be only hoisted outside the town areas.

So it might really appear that "nasi and sambal"(bread & butter), though important to PAS voters, isn't the staple food of the campaign feast. The pervasive indiscernable present economic climate suggests they might opt for spiritual boom and just bite the bullet in the economic gloom.

Manek Urai, the location


Salak said...

The "A-word" is heard yet again. This time at Manek!

"...Zaid urged Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to 'explain' in relation to the gruesome death of the Mongolian national.

The Altantuya issue has remained one of the biggest weapons in the opposition arsenal and is often deployed during elections, much to the chagrin of the premier, who has repeatedly denied any links with the matter.


Jong said...

Zaid was there at Manik Urai for a reason. He also demand that the Federal BN govt return all Oil money to Kelantan State Govt if they care for the Melayus who make up most of Kelantan.

Salak said...

"...KUALA KRAI, July 7 – PAS is still open to talks with Umno on politics and economic matters for the good of the country but it will adopt a cautious approach in doing so, PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang said.

He said PAS would first look into the topics of discussion so that the meeting would not negatively affect the party and its allies Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and DAP.

Abdul Hadi was commenting on the invitation by Women, Family and Community Development Minister Senator Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, who is also the Wanita Umno chief, to meet and discuss with the Dewan Muslimat, PAS’s women’s wing.

Malaysian Insider..."

There goes Hadi Awang again. But he's no fool. He's up to something but it can be damaging. In any case, old Tok Nik has to go out and work the grounds, just in case!

Jong said...

Yes, I will repeat it here - what is it that Hadi can't resisit in UMNO esp from Sharizat? Should he and his deputy Nasharudin Mat Isa just go ahead and join UMNO? Or are they merely interested in how much they are worth to UMNO?

I am most certain no one from PAS or Pakatan Rakyat will object if they do.

Salak said...

"...This Hadi chappie has definitely been bought. He and that nasty Nash Pas shits must be infected with the BN corrupt disease otherwise why do they persist n rile others with this unity talk but still stay within Pakatan? Are they supposed to be the Trojan horses? Pas should be split, otherwise the nons will find them unplatable n unacceptable..."

[Anonymous - Via Email]

Salak said...

Maybe Hadi Awang ate too much Buah Pala! ;)

Jong said...

Well, Hadi Awang could have mistakenly taken the "Banana Spilt" advert, no? :D

Salak said...

On the other hand, the gains PAS made in 2008 together with other PR partners could be too much success to handle. But they have good talents in PAS. Nizar alone is half of the Perak Cabinet he used to have and which Cabinet he should by right have as of this instant!

But who knows what Nasha gave him? It could have been Buah Kepayang [Buah Keluak] instead of Buah Pala!

Malay proverbs say - makan mabuk, buang sayang (poisoned if eaten, heart breaking if discarded) or just plain ambivalence!