Not uncommon for ruling govt to lose by-elections, says Dr M

CYBERJAYA: Pakatan Harapan's defeat in the recently concluded Rantau by-election is not something out of the ordinary, says Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

The Prime Minister said despite the result, the status quo remained and there was no change in government caused by the defeat.

"Most government parties during by-elections will not get a lot of support, because the voters know there will be no change in the government.

"Whatever happens in the by-election, whether the government party wins or not, the government remains the same.

"In Negri Sembilan, the state government is still Pakatan," said Dr Mahathir to reporters here when asked for his opinion on the coalition's third consecutive by-election loss in 2019.

In the by-election, Umno deputy president Datuk Mohamad Hasan defeated Pakatan's Dr S. Streram by 4,510 votes.

Two other independent candidates R. Malarvizhi and Mohd Nor Yasin only garnered 83 and 79 votes.

Mohamad won the seat unopposed in the 14th General Election after his would-be opponent Dr Streram was denied entry to the nomination centre.

However, an election petition filed by Dr Streram to declare Mohamad's walkover invalid triggered the by-election.

Popularly known as Tok Mat, the former Negri Sembilan mentri besar has held the Rantau seat since 2004.

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