KUALA LUMPUR: Barisan Nasional election candidates were assessed over the past five years and not just the past month or so, said coalition chairman Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The Prime Minister said Barisan had taken into account the performance of the candidates, their relationship with the community and the support they had from the people.
It was not just about winning minor battles but “more than that, it is to win big.
“It is pointless to win minor battles but lose the war.
“Most importantly, we want to offer to the voters candidates who are able to provide the best service for nation-building,” he said during a special press conference on the eve of Nomination Day.
Najib said the objective for the selection of the candidates was to ensure a Barisan victory and maintain the momentum of the political parties in the coalition for the long term in the interests of the people and country.
“We gave priority to local candidates although there may be one or two exceptions but, on the whole, the candidates are from among the local leaders.
“We also considered the representation according to communities because we have various communities in our country.
“It is also to ensure the diversity of communities can be seen under the Barisan Nasional, which is a party that represents a diversity of people.
“At the end of the day, political consideration precedes everything else in the selection of candidates,” said Najib.
He said the selection also took into account other needs, with new faces and young people being introduced in efforts to rejuvenate the party.
The selection also reflected the participation of women which, he said, was an ongoing commitment of Barisan.
On those who have not been selected as candidates for GE14, Najib said he hoped that they would accept the party decision with an open heart and support whoever was picked.
He also called on voters to unite to ensure a huge victory for Barisan.
“I would like to remind voters that GE14 is a process of choosing a government that will manage our lives in the next five years.
“Make a wise choice. Do not fall for the lies and seditious or slanderous remarks of the Opposition which has strayed far from the basis of their struggles,” he said. — Bernama