SEMENYIH, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today said the Semenyih state by-election will be a struggle for Pakatan Harapan (PH) and hard work is necessary to ensure victory for the party.
He stressed that it was vital for the party’s election machinery to stay united and work as a team.
“It is not going to be easy. This is going to be an uphill battle as we are faced with a difficult task," the Home Minister told a press conference after a meeting with Bersatu and community leaders ahead of the by-election set for March 2.
Based on his experience in spearheading election efforts, Muhyiddin said none of them were considered easy-wins.
"We have to maintain a positive attitude and work hard. We can’t just hope, we have to put in a lot of effort to ensure victory," he said.
It was earlier reported that PH will be fielding a candidate from Bersatu in the Semenyih state by-election after the seat fell vacant following the death PH assemblyman Bakhtiar Mohd Nor, 57, on Jan 11, from a heart attack.
Muhyiddin said the name of the candidate would be announced on Feb 14.
Responding to questions from reporters, he said PH would take heed of the call to consider a local candidate in the by-election, apart from ensuring that the candidate is qualified, capable and courteous.
He added that PH would take advantage of the by-election campaign to clarify various issues including allegations that the coalition does not protect Malay interests.
Muhyiddin said Bersatu and PH would not take the cooperation between UMNO and PAS lightly, as seen during the recent Cameron Highlands parliamentary by-election.
"I believe not all PAS members agree with the cooperation. Whatever it is, we will soon see how strong this UMNO-PAS cooperation is," he said.
On the meeting with local community leaders today, Muhyiddin said among issues raised were the Sungai Beranang flood mitigation project and the congestion at health clinics and Kajang Hospital which required the attention of the central and state governments.
In the 14th general election, Bakhtiar, who represented Bersatu, defeated three other candidates, Datuk Johan Abd Aziz (BN), Mad Shahmidur Mat Kosim (PAS) and S. Arutchelvan (PSM) with a majority of 8,964 votes.
The Semenyih by-election is the fourth to be held in Selangor after GE14 on May 9 last year, after Sungai Kandis, Seri Setia and Balakong.