Tuesday, 11 March 2008

General elections: Observation 2

This general election sees the Barisan Nasional's control of Parliament reduced to a simple majority. The Barisan now holds 140 seats while the Opposition has 82.

So who will be the new Opposition Leader? Traditionally, the role goes to the opposition party with the most seats. For example, in 1999, the Opposition Leader was from Parti Islam and in 2004, he was from the Democratic Action Party.

This time around, with the Parti Keadilan Rakyat having the most number of seats, the new Opposition Leader should be from the PKR. Anwar Ibrahim is the obvious person to lead from the Opposition bench as he is the de facto leader of the PKR. It is widely expected that someone from within PKR will be resigning his/her Parliamentary seat after 15 Apr 2008 to force a by-election which will see Anwar presenting himself as the candidate.

Will it be his daughter or his wife? I do not foresee his daughter giving up the Lembah Pantai seat in Kuala Lumpur because the scalp that she claimed was too big a prize to give up. So it may be Anwar's wife that will give up her Permatang Pauh seat.

However, a little bird suggested to me that it may be neither of them. And the person who may be giving up his seat in Parliament could be one that won both Parliament and State seats. His reason for wanting to surrender his Parliament seat will be that he wants to concentrate on the State.

There shouldn't be many people who is in this enviable position, especially within the ranks of the PKR. Therefore, I'll leave it to you to speculate on his identity. Anyway, Anwar has said it is not urgent for him to consider standing for Parliament at this time. But things may change by 15 April. We've got to wait and see....

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