Three-way contest will be inevitable if Penang heads to the polls this year, and this will likely result in greater racial polarisation along urban and rural lines, political analysts forecast.
The ruling DAP and PKR can rest easy in urban seats where the mixed ethnic demography will likely continue to provide strong support; however, their position is less secure in the predominantly Malay rural constituencies where PKR will have to scramble for votes with PAS ― with whom it is still friends ― and Umno.
“PKR won all the seats in Penang based on one-to-one fights, so if there is a split three-way fight, PKR will pay the price,” political scientist James Chin told Malay Mail Online in an interview this week.
The University of Tasmania’s Asia Institute director suspects that PAS is working surreptitiously with Umno to kill off Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah), splinter party and the third partner in the Pakatan Harapan pact, if snap polls are called in Penang, and said PKR will be “collateral damage”. (more…)