Prime Minister Najib Razak will not call for a general election PRU14 this year due to the unfavourable economic sentiments, says Rafizi Ramli.

The PKR vice-president said based on a survey by Invoke covering 3,783 registered voters nationwide, over 60% of voters felt that the country’s economy was on the wrong track, and that the country was worse off compared with four years ago.

“The window to call for the next general election is after the tabling of the 2018 Budget, and that puts a possible date around November. If he does that, he has September and October to fix things.

“However, it is unlikely Najib can conjure up anything in the following two months, even with a people-friendly Budget, that can drastically improve economic sentiments.

“Calling for general election in November would be a very big gamble, and Najib is not known to take big risks.

“That is why, I don’t think the election will be held this year. It will likely be next year,” he said in a press conference here today to announce the survey findings by Invoke.

The interactive interview phone survey, held for a month from June 10 to July 14, focused on the country’s economic environment, cost of living and the rising costs of goods.

Of the 3,783 who took the survey, Malays made up 59%, Chinese (26%), Bumiputeras in Sabah and Sarawak (8%) and Indians (7%).

Among the questions asked were:

  • if the people felt the country’s economy was on the right track;
  • if the family’s economy was better now as compared with four years ago;
  • the percentage of increase in expenditure on food and goods;
  • the percentage of increase in monthly utility bills;
  • the percentage of increase in the expenditure on prices of petrol and diesel; and
  • the percentage of increase in their spending on necessities like clothes, school-related expenses.

Rafizi attributed the low response rate to when the survey was conducted, which was around two weeks before and after Hari Raya Aidilfitri. -FMT



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