A political analyst has advised Pakatan Harapan (PH) leaders to engage with #UndiRosak supporters movement immediately or face the possibility of more spoilt votes this coming election (GE14).
Kamarul Zaman Yusoff of Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) said it was time for PH to take the #UndiRosak campaigners seriously.
“Stop ridiculing them. Engage with them to address their dissatisfaction with PH, either on policies or personalities, and reassure them of the need to vote for PH.
“If it involves personalities like Mahathir, then PH needs to get him to meet them directly and resolve whatever needs to be resolved,” he told FMT.
He was referring to the movement’s unhappiness with Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who was recently announced as the opposition pact’s candidate for prime minister if it wins GE14.
Activist Maryam Lee, who supports the campaign, said many Malaysians were unhappy that Mahathir’s party, PPBM, is part of PH.
“I don’t want Dr Mahathir Mohamad to be the next prime minister,” she said at a forum last month.
Kamarul said the #UndiRosak campaign against Mahathir’s candidacy as prime minister would affect PH in GE14.
He said although it could sway voters to the opposition, it could also alienate others.
He added that the loss could offset the gain, especially in urban and suburban areas, or among those who had experienced unfair treatment or witnessed it during Mahathir’s 22-year tenure as prime minister.
In the 2013 general election, the constituency of Pasir Gudang had the highest number of spoilt votes (1,704), followed by Sepang (1,226).
Bentong had 988 spoilt votes, Bachok 947, Kuala Selangor 934, Kota Marudu 911, Cameron Highlands 877, Kuala Nerus 772, Sungai Besar 690, Labis 689 and Baram 242.
The majority of these spoilt votes have been attributed to voters’ ignorance in marking their ballot papers.
However, a source told FMT that the #UndiRosak campaign could see people intentionally spoiling their votes.
Lee said there was no way to tell if more voters were expected to object to Mahathir’s appointment as prime minister candidate.
The Gabungan Kiri committee member said they had drawn up a manifesto for the people, and that politicians who wanted their support should listen to their suggestions.
“So far, the first to endorse and accept the manifesto has been PSM.
“Upon releasing it, we expect politicians to be sensitive to the needs of the people and to adopt the manifesto themselves.”
She said the manifesto went beyond political parties and provided an alternative vision for Malaysia’s development.
“It doesn’t matter if Barisan Nasional or PH adopts it. The manifesto is for the people to express alternatives,” she added.
The manifesto includes fair wealth distribution, free university education and transformation towards a high-tech green economy.