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Monday April 8, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Friday April 26, 2013 MYT 1:12:33 AM
by bavani m
FOR the 13th general election (GE 13) much has been emphasised on winnable candidates. What that means is that there is a high chance that the Federal Territory Barisan Nasional (FTBN) will be relying on fresh faces to contest in all its 11 seats in Kuala Lumpur.
While the BN leadership has yet to release the candidates’ list, sources say new faces are likely to be fielded in almost all the seats.
In 2008, the BN lost six seats to Pakatan Rakyat; Lembah Pantai, Titiwangsa, Batu, Bandar Tun Razak, Segambut and Wangsa Maju.
Among the new faces expected to contest this time around are, Federal Territories and Urban Wellbeing Minister Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin (Umno), Datuk Johari Ghani (Umno), Dr Dominic Lau (Gerakan), Tan Kok Eng (MCA), Jayanthi Devi Balaguru (Gerakan), Datuk Mohd Shafie Abdullah (Umno) and Datuk A. Chandrakumanan (PPP) respectively.
A seat-swapping exercise between Umno and MCA has now enabled Mohd Shafie Abdullah who is the Wangsa Maju Barisan Nasional chairman to be fielded in Wangsa Maju.
Wangsa Maju Umno, which took over the BN chief post from MCA two years ago, has sought the Wangsa Maju parliamentary constituency which they claim is a winnable seat.
In the 2008 general election Barisan’s candidate Datuk Yew Teong Look, who is from the MCA, lost narrowly by 150 votes to Wee Choo Keong who stood as a PKR candidate. Wee who was formerly from DAP had since left PKR.
Another interesting development is taking shape in Kepong where talk is rife that Gerakan had swapped the Kepong seat with PPP, and Chandrakumanan, who is the FT PPP chief, is likely to be the BN candidate.
Meanwhile, a controversy is brewing in Segambut over the naming of the BN candidate.
While the Gerakan leadership has endorsed the Segambut BN chairman Jayanthi as their candidate, another name, Dr Wong Ruen Yuan who is the FT Gerakan state secretary has emerged as a possible candidate.
When contacted, Jayanthi declined to comment on Dr Wong being linked to the Segambut seat.
Over in Kepong, the MCA Kepong Task Force head Tan Kok Eng is likely to be be fielded in Bandar Tun Razak which was earlier tipped to be given to Datuk Theng Book who heads the Bandar Tun Razak 1Malaysia Service Centre.
Kok Eng is the son of MCA treasurer-general and Federal Territory chief Datuk Seri Tan Chai Ho. The senior Tan held the Bandar Tun Razak seat for three consecutive terms before losing to Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim of PKR by a 2,515 majority in 2008.
Another name making the rounds in FT is Datuk Johari Ghani, who is tipped to be the BN candidate for Titiwangsa.
As the Titiwangsa BN chairman, Johari has made his presence felt in the Malay majority township. Dr Lo’Lo’ Mohd Ghazali of PAS won the Titiwangsa seat in 2008. She passed away in 2011.
FT MCA 1Malaysia Task Force deputy chief Frankie Gan Joon Zin has been mentioned many times to be the Bukit Bintang candidate.Young and energetic, Gan is also well known in the community for solving local issues.
The Opposition’s ability to retain the Kepong, Seputeh, Bukit Bintang and Cheras seats meant that Setiawangsa, won by former FT Minister Datuk Seri Zulhasnan Rafique, is now the only seat under the BN banner going into the coming elections.
Speculation is rife that Zulhasnan will be replaced by his division vice-chairman Datuk Ahmad Fauzi Zahari for the Setiawangsa seat. In 2008, the three-term MP defeated PKR’s Ibrahim Yaakob with a majority of 8,134 votes.
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