Friday, August 05, 2011

Choose the BEST candidates - irrespective of 'whose seat' it is?

Again, the Opposition parties are sitting down to talk about seat allocations - and hopefully, they just do not decide according to which seat, which party. More importantly is to look at the best candidate in the areas concerned, and they should be chosen irrespective of which party they are members of ...or whether they are a party member or not. Now, it is also important to get other opposition parties like PSM and PRM also involved in that process, when it comes to Peninsular Malaysia seats.

Let us hope that the Pakatan Rakyat discussion is not too bothered about the ethnic/religious composition of the constituencies - for then, they become no better that the BN. We want a Malaysian opposition - and a good pool of elected representatives, with the capacity to perform their duties effectively - and not just ones who sit quietly in  Parliament or the State Assembly, not raising questions or any issues, be it at the national or local level. We do not want reps with no positions of their own - who are just really insignificant, who are only there to vote as the whip says - and who can only 'repeat' what the leaders say on different issues, with no additional personal thought or input that will enhance an argument or a position. We do not want those who just oppose the BN, but have no idea about alternatives at all. In the 21st century, Malaysians deserve quality - and we certainly do not want any more 'party-hoppers'.

Let us look at the history of candidates we choose - have they got a history of fighting for human rights, justice and democracy? Let us not give these ex-BN Ministers, MPs, ADUNs, Senators, leaders seats anymore - let their loyalty be proven first. PKR has had a bad record when it comes to choosing candidates... and even 'leaders' - too many have 'jumped' - so, be careful when you do choose your candidates.

Hazlan Zakaria
Aug 5, 11

This, despite directives from Pakatan headquarters for the state leaderships to submit their finalised list of candidates for the upcoming general elections by July 31.

NONESources close to the opposition coalition informed Malaysiakini that as of now only one state, namely Perlis, had submitted their list to the national headquarters, five days after the deadline.

In Negri Sembilan, DAP Youth leader Anthony Loke (left) confirmed that despite the deadline having passed, negotiations are still ongoing, though describing the discussions as "good and going smoothly".

Asked if there are any major issues or changes that are causing the slowdown, he dismissed them as just minor matters.

"There are some changes to the allocations, but I foresee no major problems. I am confident that we will reach a good consensus," said Loke.

He added that the state Pakatan are confident that the matter will be resolved within two weeks.

'Similar delays in Selangor'
Another source in Selangor close to the seat negotiations also confirmed similar delays in the state.

"There are some details to be ironed-out at the district levels," he explained.

The source said that on the whole their policy is to try and maintain the seats whose party won them in the last election.

azlanHowever, he also foresaw some minor changes to the arrangement to accommodate recent developments.

The source related that some of the delays involve seats where the opposition is looking to win, as they decide on which component party, candidate and machinery would be the most appropriate to be allocated the constituencies.

While he cannot give a time line on when Selangor Pakatan will finalise its list, he admitted that if it takes too long, there is a cut-off point where the national Pakatan leadership may takeover to dictate its choice.

"This is especially with the uncertainty and imminence of the 13th general election."

Several other sources have also confirmed similar situations in other states though refused to be quoted or provide details.

The holdup in seat allocations is one of the chinks in Pakatan's armour as PKR, DAP and PAS continue to wrangle over the issue with each trying to solidify its own position.

This is especially amidst concerns of party-hoppers prevalent in PKR and attempts by the DAP and PAS to expand out of their traditional seats and areas.

One example of how this can cause the opposition coalition problems was the recent Sarawak state election where last-minute haggling had caused the opposition valuable time and effort that could have been spent campaigning and solidifying voter support.
Pakatan state level negotiations for seat allocations are still being plagued by delays as discussions continue among component parties.

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