SUNGAI BESAR – June 18, 2016: The opposition was dealt a crushing blow in both Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections where Barisan Nasional won with overwhelmingly bigger majority.
In both by-elections were it was initially expected to be a close fight, BN secured a majority of 9,191 votes in Sungai Besar and 6,969 votes in Kuala Kangsar.
The BN candidate for Sungai Besar is Budiman Mohd Zohdi, whereas its Kuala Kangsar candidate is Datin Mastura Yazid.
In Sungai Besar, Budiman received 16, 800 votes as compared to Pas candidate Dr Abdul Rani Osman, who received 6,902 votes, whereas Amanah’s Azhar Abdul Shukur garnered 7, 609 votes.
It was a landslide victory for BN as the ruling coalition’s majority of 9, 191 was much higher than its razor-thin 399 majority in the constituency during the 13th General Election in 2013.
Early reports of impending BN victory at Sungai Besar was first confirmed with the arrival of Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein who was the first from BN to arrive at the vote tallying centre in Dewan Sri Bernam here.
After Hishammuddin, Budiman was the second to arrive and he was seen hugging some of his supporters who were waiting there.
The results were announced by Election Commission returning officer Mohd Khairuddin Mohd Som at 9pm.
Voter turnout was 74.4 per cent with 31, 870 out of the 42, 836 registered voters casting their votes.
The Sungai Besar parliamentary constituency is made up of two state constituencies namely Sungai Panjang and Sekinchan.
During a press conference held after the announcement of Budiman’s victory, Hishammuddin said that such a huge majority won by BN was a testament to its unity.
“If we stand united, then nothing is impossible for us to achieve. This victory was not the work of Umno alone, it is the work of every component parties in BN.
“I hope this victory will reinvigorate the spirits of Selangor BN and I hope more young and winnable candidates like Budi (Budiman) will be cultivated in the future,” he said.
However, Hishamuddin added that it is too soon to use the Sungai Besar by-election result as a barometer for the next General Election.
On question regarding what will be his first mandate as parliamentary member for Sungai Besar, Budiman said that he wants to improve the condition of the Sekinchan wet market.
“Since DAP took over, I noticed that the place was rather worn-out and I also want to open up a parliamentary service centre in Sekinchan,” said Budiman.
Meanwhile in Kuala Kangsar, Bernama reported that Mastura obtained majority of 6, 969 compared to the 1,082 majorty won by her late husband Datuk Wan Mohamad Khair-il Anuar Wan Ahmad during GE13.
Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-election returning officer Mior Muhammad Jamil Mior Zakaria, when announcing the official results at the Dewan Jubli Perak at 9.55 pm, said Mastura garnered 12,653 votes.
The other candidates, Dr Najihatussalehah Ahmad of PAS (5,684); Prof Dr Ahmad Termizi Ramli of Amanah (4,883) while Independent Izat Bukhary Ismail Bukhary only obtained 54 votes and lost his deposit.
Mastura’s triumph simultaneously enabled her to continue her husband’s struggle other than repeating the history of a woman becoming the Kuala Kangsar member of parliament after Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz became its elected representative for seven terms from 1982 to 2008.
The Kuala Kangsar by-election was held simultaneously with the Sungai Besar by-election in Selangor, following the deaths of the respective incumbents namely, Wan Mohammad Khair-il Anuar and Tan Sri Noriah Kasnon in a helicopter crash in Sebuyau, Sarawak on May 5.
At the Kuala Kangsar by-election, 71.4 per cent of voters turned out to vote as compared to 84.3 per cent in the 13th General Election.