Dengan dukacita, kami daripada lapan organisasi masyarakat madani Pulau Pinang terpaksa membatalkan debat terbuka yang dijadualkan pada 4 Mei jam 8 malam bagi calon-calon pilihan raya kecil Permatang Pauh.
The voters of Teluk Intan have a decisive role to play in ensuring that the new Malaysia that we seek is not a dream but a reality that can be achieved, says P Ramakrishnan.
The by-election in Teluk Intan is crucial for many reasons. Whether we are going to rot in the rut or we are going to charter a new course for Malaysia for the betterment of the country is something you can determine.
You have an historic opportunity to break away from the race-based politics and bring about a New Malaysia that will spell the death knell for political parties that exploit and thrive on divisive policies.
The old politics will continue to harp on fears and violence if there was to be a change in the status quo. This is what they preach to maintain their hold on power.
Here we have an intelligent and articulate individual in Dyana Sofya, who is bravely and confidently offering herself as a candidate. Her unbiased and open-minded views expressed with conviction have rattled the Barisan Nasional.
As a Malay, she is expected to fit into the Umno mould that requires the women just to follow and obey the dictates of the leaders. But she has steadfastly rejected this in favour of a party that preaches unity and champions the cause that will benefit all needy Malaysians irrespective of race.
Dyana promises a change that must come when Malaysians come together and decide that the racial politics that has divided us and kept us apart for more than 50 years must go. It has no place in a modern and progressive society.
She must be seen as a person who is concerned about the wrongs that are ruining the nation and is passionate about bringing justice and fairness for all.
The Teluk Intan voters must give her their support and break the racial barriers that have prevented the emergence of a truly united nation grounded in justice and fairness.
If the voters of Teluk Intan condemn corruption, then they must vote for change.
If the voters of Teluk Intan are outraged by the unruly behaviour of hooligans and rowdies who stormed the Penang State Assembly without any respect for a sacrosanct institution and created a ruckus, then they must vote for change.
If the voters are disappointed and disgusted with the role played by the judiciary, then they must vote for change.
If the voters of Teluk Intan are frustrated with the selective prosecution of Opposition leaders to the detriment of our democracy, then they must vote for Dyana.
If the voters of Teluk Intan don’t approve of the harassment and persecution of Anwar Ibrahim in a determined effort to put him away, then they must vote for Dyana.
If the voters of Teluk Intan are aware how the wealth of this nation is squandered at the expense of the many for the benefit of the few who are close to the powers that be, then they must vote for Dyana.
If the voters of Teluk Intan are convinced that Altantuya was murdered and the killers have got off scot free, then they must vote for Dyana.
If the voters of Teluk Intan believe in the expose of private investigator Bala, who revealed how big names were involved in the murder of Altantuya, then they must vote for Dyana.
Tomorrow is a defining moment for this nation. The voters of Teluk Intan have a decisive role to play in ensuring that the new Malaysia that we seek is not a dream but a reality that can be achieved.
It has not been the happiest leadership transition for the ruling coalition. In our cover story, Khoo Boo Teik looks at the unusual position the BN is in, having lost four by-elections in the peninsula since the last general election. At the heart of Pakatan Rakyat’s advances is a sea-change at the social level – a phenomenon which has been captured on blogs, websites, and Youtube.
In analysing the last three by-elections, Ong Kian Ming points out that Pakatan has now firmly co-opted the BN’s winning formula, especially in the ethnically mixed seats in the peninsula.
The Barisan Nasional has suffered four deadly blows in a row. Umno has been soundly defeated on three occasions since 8 March 2008. The outcome of these by-elections has confirmed that there is no stopping the Pakatan no matter what crafty means the BN adopts or devices to reach out to the electorate.
Barely a week after assuming the top posts in Umno, Najib Razak and his deputy Muhyiddin Yassin will face a referendum of sorts – a triple by-election showdown.
Yi Ge Qiu surveys the Batang Ai state seat ahead of polling day. A defeat for the BN could spell long term trouble for the Taib Mahmud-led ruling coalition in the state. Win or lose, PKR will have to do some soul-searching over the choice of its candidate.
Over in the peninsula, Anil Netto takes a look at the Bakit Selambau state seat in Kedah and the Bukit Gantang parliamentary seat in Perak.
The Election Commission has no inherent powers to decide whether a vacancy has occurred in a constituency. It has no discretionary authority to override the notification of the Speaker of the Perak State Assembly declaring that the state seats of Changkat Jering and Behrang have fallen vacant following the resignations of the incumbents of these seats.