Former Malaysian lawmaker urges Barisan to introspectApril 6th, 2008 - 3:33 pm ICT by admin
Kuala Lumpur, April 6 (IANS) Saying that “voters are not stupid”, S. Murugesan, a Malaysian Indian MP who lost the general election, has urged the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) to introspect. Murugesan of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC), who lost the Subang parliamentary seat, said BN, of which his party is a constituent, must “examine itself”, The New Strait Times reported Sunday.
“Instead of bickering about the electorate, it’s high time to find out whether this is a change in our political landscape or the people venting their anger.
“People are not stupid. They know they cannot get everything they ask for. But they want to see people stand up for them and be their voice. That’s the part we have not grasped, the expectation many of us have not met.”
He admitted that alarm had been raised over the likely swing by the ethnic Indian vote to the opposition after the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf)’s controversial rally in November that was forcibly dispersed.
The government said the rally was disturbing the ethnic balance in Malaysia.
However, Murugesan said that he had not expected a shift in votes among the more affluent ethnic Indians.
According to a study, an estimated 69 percent ethnic Indian voters, who form 8 percent of Malaysia’s 28 million people, went to the opposition.
Murugesan, 40, is back to his legal practice, but is determined to contest the polls again, the newspaper said.
“Like victories, defeats have to be taken with sportsmanship. I was shocked by my defeat after the encouraging response I received on my rounds, but the voters are always right.”
The surprise winner in Subang is another ethnic Indian, Sivarasa Rasaiah, who contested as a candidate of the conservative opposition party PKR of former deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim.
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