TANJUNG MALIM – “Help solve our problems and bring development to our area. Don’t just show up during campaigning to win votes.”
That’s the clear message voters have sent out to the candidates involved in the three-cornered fight in the Slim state by-election as campaigning entered its second day today, with some “big guns” joining the fray.
Among the Barisan Nasional leaders who turned up to support their candidate, Mohd Zaidi Aziz, were UMNO vice-president and Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein as well as Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.
Independent candidate Amir Khusyairi Mohamad Tanusi, who is representing the yet-to-be-registered Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang), had Simpang Renggam Member of Parliament Dr Maszlee Malik lending a helping hand during campaigning at Felda Utara Trolak here.
But the voters are clearly not impressed, yet.
As one voter, Muhammad Fahmi Anuar, 26, succinctly puts it: “Honestly, I prefer a representative that we are comfortable meeting with to solve our woes. Most importantly, we don’t see him only once every five years,” he told Bernama today.
The youngster, who is from Felda Trolak Utara, also hoped that the elected representative would help them overcome the frequent flood problems that occur in the area whenever there was a downpour.
P. Thanaraj, 25, of Taman Krishnan, meanwhile, wants the elected representative to provide the kind of excellent services offered by the previous assemblyman, Datuk Mohd Khusairi Abdul Talim, who died on July 15.
“We want a leader who can help solve problems faced by locals, such as those related to jobs, floods and poverty. We do not want a representative who only comes around during campaigning and then disappears after winning,” he said.
As for Kampung Sungai Jentong Orang Asli head Isi Yok Kechil, 53, he wants a leader capable of continuously providing development for the comfort of the 502 people in the village who, among others, are in need of a multi-purpose hall and school vans.
Another voter, a 73-year-old who only wanted to be known as Ah Keat, was more straightforward, saying he wants a candidate who will fulfil the promises made during campaigning.
“I don’t want a candidate who makes all kinds of empty promises during campaigning to win votes. Whoever the elected representative is or whichever party he is from, he must help the people,” said the trader.
The Aug 29 Slim state by-election will witness a three-cornered fight between BN’s Mohd Zaidi, 43, and Independent candidates S. Sentharasekaran, 44, and Amir Khusyairi, 38.