ALOR SETAR - Before Malaysia’s 15th General Election (GE15) is done and dusted, Padang Serai in Kedah and Tioman in Pahang go to the polls on Wednesday.
Four candidates are fighting it out in both the Padang Serai parliamentary seat and the Tioman state seat.
Voting in the two seats was postponed from Nov 19 following the death of Padang Serai incumbent M. Karupaiya of Pakatan Harapan (PH) three days before voting and Perikatan Nasional (PN) candidate Md Yunus Ramli on the eve of GE15.
This time around, Datuk Azman Nasrudin (PN), Dr Mohamad Sofee Razak (PH), Hamzah Abd Rahman (Pejuang) and Independent candidate Sreanandha Rao are in the running for the Kedah seat, although the actual fight will be between PN and PH, with the withdrawal of Barisan Nasional’s (BN) Datuk Sivarraajh Chandran.
The Tioman state seat will also be a fight between PN’s Nor Idayu Hashim and BN’s Datuk Seri Mohd Johari Hussain although Osman Bakar (Pejuang) and Independent Sulaiman Bakar are also in the fray.
Will there be another “green wave” hitting Kedah and Pahang again like Nov 19 or, will PH’s successful takeover of Putrajaya shine through?
Businessman Hamidan Ahmad, 50, said looking at the current political climate, he intended to vote for PN in Padang Serai.
“I have made up my mind. After all, what have we seen since the formation of the new Federal Government?” he asked.
Another voter who wanted to be known as Raju said he was unsure who to vote for.
“I have been a Barisan supporter all my life. Now, I have to choose between Pakatan or Perikatan. I am a bit confused,” he lamented.
Last week, BN’s Sivarraajh pulled out in support of PH candidate Mohamad Sofee following the formation of the unity government involving their respective coalitions at the federal level.
The result of the Padang Serai election will be testimony of how popular the new unity government led by Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim is.
During GE15, PN won 13 parliamentary seats in Kedah, with PH taking just one.
Spanning some 343km, the Padang Serai constituency has 133,870 voters with a breakdown of 65,586 male and 68,284 female voters.
The majority of the voters are aged between 21 and 30 with 29.1 per cent, followed by those aged 31-40 at 19.7 per cent.
There are 62.6 per cent Malay voters at 83,841, follow...