SEREMBAN: Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) will consider fielding their big names in the east coast states in the 15th General Election to expand its influence there, says its president Mohamad Sabu (pic).
He admitted that Amanah did not wield much influence in Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang but remained optimistic that its fortunes would change in the near future.
"When I was with PAS, I once gave a ceramah in Tampin in Negri Sembilan about 20 years ago and there were only five attendees.
"Today, the parliamentary seat is held by Amanah," he said, adding that the scenario was also similar when he used to deliver talks in Johor, then a bastion for Barisan Nasional.
Mohamad, popularly known as Mat Sabu, said when PAS used to contest in states such as Negri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor, most of its candidates would lose their deposits.
"Back then, we considered it as national service to contest in the west coast states and if our candidate (from PAS) manages to keep his deposit, it was already considered a big victory.
"So, my advice to Amanah members in the east coast states is not to give up and or feel disheartened as we will emerge stronger in years to come," he said after closing the national Amanah convention here on Sunday (Sept 18).
Mohamad, who is also Pakatan Harapan deputy chairman, said PAS' fortunes have also changed for the better compared to several decades ago.
Citing an example, he said the party contested 90 seats in the 1986 election but only managed to win Pengkalan Chepa in Kelantan.
"So, we must now work even harder to convince the people and make Amanah a model party not only for Malaysia but for the Islamic world," he said, adding that Amanah was already gaining traction among voters in Kelantan as the people were unhappy with the state government.
"PAS and Umno are a bit stronger in Terengganu but I am certain we can give them a good fight there," he said.
Mohamad also said Amanah would be contesting some 50 parliamentary seats in GE15 and advised party members to work closely with their allies in Pakatan as every seat was crucial.