‘Black areas’ need gentle touch, says pro-tem head

  • Nation
  • Friday, 20 Feb 2004

BUTTERWORTH: The Permatang Pauh Umno division is confident it can woo voters in the three “black areas” within the constituency through its “soft and humanitarian” approach. 

Division pro-tem chairman Datuk Abdul Jalil Abd Majid said committee members from the division’s various wings would go down to the ground in Mengkuang Sungai Lembu, Sungai Semambu and Kubang Semang to touch base with voters there. 

He added that the division’s top priority would be to resolve the problems and needs of the hardcore poor, disabled, single mothers, aged and orphans. 

The Permatang Pauh constituency has 53,000 voters with the electorate divided among three state seats: Permatang Pasir (18,000), Penanti (15,000) and Seberang Jaya (20,000). 

Before the redelineation, the parliamentary seat was held by Parti Keadilan Nasional president Datin Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, wife of jailed former deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. 

“It’ll not be an easy task but we’ll try to make these voters understand how a Barisan representative can help them make their life more comfortable,” Abdul Jalil told reporters at a media dinner organised by the division in Seberang Jaya last night. 

“Keadilan might try to revive the Anwar sentiment but voters can think for themselves. Umno will not force anybody to choose but we will try to work very hard to win the people’s hearts,” he added. 

He added that the division’s machinery would continue to hold talks and social events in all the areas to increase their awareness on the “winds of change”.  

“From our past experience in the previous general election, people closed their doors when they saw us. But we continued on,” he said.  

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