PONTIAN: There is a possibility of a snap election early next year should the agreed power transition between Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim does not take place, says Umno.
In giving a hint on this, party deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan said voters in Tanjung Piai must send a strong message to the Pakatan Harapan government.
"We should not let Pakatan to continue ruling for a full term because the people are suffering.
"By early next year, if Tun (Dr Mahathir) does not hand over the power to Anwar, the Parliament may be dissolved.
"Let us emulate the spirit of (previous by-elections) Cameron Highlands, Semenyih and Rantau, and work hard to win back Tanjung Piai.
"We must put our foot down because the country's sliding economy is worrying," he said this while addressing over 200 village folks at Kampung Penerok in Kukup on Tuesday (Nov 5) night.
Mohamad, fondly known as Tok Mat, spent over two hours mingling with the villagers while campaigning for Barisan Nasional candidate Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng.
When met later, Mohamad clarified that he was merely "joking" about Parliament being dissolved early next year, as it is the sole discretion of the Prime Minister.
"It was just a joke. How will I know? Everything is close to the PM's chest.
"I just want to remind the Barisan machinery not to be complacent, but to be fully prepared if the 15th General Election is held early.
"Despite the Muafakat Nasional alliance is formed, it is not going to be a sure win for us," he said, adding that fielding an MCA candidate in the by-election showed that Barisan was "looking at the bigger picture" while rejecting racism.
Muafakat Nasional refers to the new alliance between PAS and Umno, formalised in September this year.
MCA and MIC are component parties in Barisan.
Mohamad also claimed that should the Muafakat Nasional agenda work, Barisan should be able to win 10 states in the GE15.
"Based on the current political scenario, the new alliance will allow us to get back Melaka, Negri Sembilan, Perak and Kedah.
"Apart from these four states, we can also take back Johor and Selangor, provided there are no more fights among Barisan component parties.
"Sepakat punca selamat, sengketa punca celaka (unity brings peace, dispute causes harm). That's why we must not fight among ourselves," he said, adding that the new alliance also needed the support of Sabah and Sarawak to win.
In his speech, Dr Wee called on the voters to continue throwing their support behind Barisan.
"We know we will not be able to change the government this time around.
"But this is a battle of the referendum. It is our chance to voice our dissatisfactions to the Pakatan government," the former two-term MP said.
The Tanjung Piai polls on Nov 16 will be a six-cornered fight between Pakatan's Karmaine Sardini, Barisan's Dr Wee, Gerakan's Wendy Subramaniam, Pan Malaysian Islamic Front (Berjasa)'s Badhrulhisham Abdul Aziz, and two independent candidates - Faridah Aryani Abdul Ghaffar and Ang Chuan Lock.
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