KUALA LUMPUR: Pakatan Harapan leaders are set to discuss their loss in Tanjung Piai in a presidential council meeting next week even as its leaders promise to learn from their defeat by promising to speed up reforms, enhance governance and fulfil pledges made in the last general election.
In Seremban, Parti Amanah Negara deputy president Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub said the defeat, including the people’s unhappiness towards the government, would be discussed at the Pakatan presidential council meeting.
The meeting, he said, would conduct a post-mortem and draft follow-up action.
“I treat this phenomenon as only temporary in nature because normally, there are groups that exercise their right in the form of a protest in any by-election.
‘’At the same time, I see this matter is important so that whatever that we think is necessary for restructuring, we will do so under consensus in Pakatan, ” he said, adding that many of Pakatan’s “success stories” had not reached the grassroots.
Vowing that the defeat would not weaken Pakatan’s spirit, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu said the coalition would continue to work hard for the people.
“The results call for the Pakatan government to continue to improve its governance so that all efforts and initiatives implemented can be felt by the people.
“We will also take efforts to close ranks between the leaders of the parties in Pakatan and at the same time, intensify programmes to disseminate information to the people, ” he said in a statement yesterday.
DAP veteran leader Lim Kit Siang said both the party and Pakatan accepted the message of the Tanjung Piai voters, who not only spoke on behalf of themselves but also for the country in voicing their frustration and unhappiness at the pace of reforms since the last general election.
“The devastating by-election results have given greater urgency and importance to the review of the pace and implementation of the reforms promised by Pakatan, especially those contained in Buku Harapan in the 14th General Election manifesto and for which the Pakatan presidential council has set up a special review committee, ” he said in a statement.
On Saturday, Barisan Nasional candidate Dr Wee Jeck Seng won the by-election with a 15,086-vote majority over Pakatan candidate Karmaine Sardini.
In Ipoh, PKR election system committee chairman Dr Lee Boon Chye said the Pakatan leadership must make changes to ensure continuous support from the people.
He said there had been a significant deterioration in support for Pakatan in the past 18 months that had led to the defeat in Tanjung Piai.
“After the general election, public support at that time was between 60% and 70%.
“Why is the deterioration so significant in the last 18 months? This, the leadership must identify and work on it, ” he told reporters after launching a blood and organ donation pledge campaign.
Dr Lee said the disappointing by-election results must be a start to making changes.
“The people have made their decision and Pakatan must give serious attention to the matter, ” he said.
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