MELAKA: With polling day for the state election here less than a day away, political research firm Ilham Centre has predicted that Barisan Nasional will comfortably win 11 seats, with Pakatan Harapan taking seven.
The 11 seats it predicted Barisan would win were Ayer Limau, Serkam, Taboh Naning, Ayer Molek, Sungai Rambai, Sungai Udang, Lendu, Kuala Linggi, Telok Mas, Merlimau and Rim.
For Pakatan, the seven seats were Bukit Katil, Paya Rumput, Duyong, Ayer Keroh, Kesidang, Kota Laksamana and Bandar Hilir.
According to Ilham Centre, Barisan could form the next state government if it could secure four other seats, adding it had identified ten seats which could see surprises.
The ten are Asahan, Kelebang, Tanjong Bidara, Pantai Kundor, Durian Tunggal, Machap Jaya, Rembia, Pengkalan Batu, Bemban dan Gadek.
"It is hard to get an accurate reading from these ten seats due to close fights between candidates," it said.
Ilham Centre added Perikatan Nasional could spring surprises in Tanjung Bidara, Rembia and Bemban due to the strength of their candidates.
"We are seeing Perikatan increasingly stealing votes in these areas," it said.
Tanjung Bidara, a long-time Umno stronghold, will see Melaka Umno chief Datuk Seri Ab Rauf Yusoh locked in a three-cornered fight against Perikatan's choice for chief minister, Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin and Pakatan's Zainal Hassan.
As the 12-day campaign period comes to a close, Ilham Centre said Barisan appeared to have an edge over Perikatan and Pakatan.
"Pakatan may win if voter turnout is more than 80%, and Perikatan if they are able to break the dominance of Barisan's Malay votes.
"If these two situations didn't happen, then Barisan will prevail."
Ilham centre also said that Pakatan could win three-cornered fights.
The survey by Ilham Centre, involving 1,051 registered voters in Melaka, was conducted from Oct 23 to Nov 15.
There would be five-cornered fights in five seats, namely in Rembia, Machap Jaya, Paya Rumput, Pengkalan Batu and Bemban. Nine seats would witness four-cornered fights, while 11 other seats would have three-cornered fights.
A total of 112 candidates, comprising 28 each from Barisan, Perikatan and Pakatan as well as five from Parti Bumiputera Perkasa Malaysia and one from Parti Perikatan India Muslim Nasional while there would be 22 independent candidates would contest the Melaka state election.