Saturday, May 4, 2013


At 3am yesterday morning, PAS held a munajab – a special prayer at the Dataran Stadium in Kota Baru where some 30,000 members and supporters turned up, filling the field beside the stadium into a sea of people.
This is a normal affair before every general election as the Islamic party seeks guidance and blessing from Allah The Almighty.
Politically, it is also a show of force where the party leaders are convince that Kelantanese who are present are still with them amidst the onslaught by Barisan Nasional (BN) to topple them.
Despite the party losing support and influence which no one can accurately determine how many percent, the party managed to pull some 30,000 to perform the munajab at 3am.
BN, the opposition in the state that has been tirelessly making attempts the last 23 years to take back the state since 1999 general election will also do the same Saturday morning – with a different style.
At 9am on Saturday, BN will gather 10,000 motorcycles with its red T-shirt for UBAH or change that will roam the streets and to all the 15 parliamentary constituencies to counter PAS munajab.
Both are playing the psychological war that may or may not tilt the fence sitters and this final assault has created an atmosphere of tense around the state.
The ‘war’ has actually began this morning where the dull and quiet environment will be hot and heaty until Sunday when voting begins.
The situation is tense for both sides as PAS, admitting the erosion of support and influence is still confident of retaining the state while BN is confident of taking back the state after 23 years of tireless effort.
Going by the operation posts erected at every kampungs and streets in towns, BN seems to have an upper hand as the change in mindset of the people have taken place since two years ago when the coalition launched its Red Wave operation.
House-to-house campaign, the method that usually produce quite an accurate reading of support was launched at the same time which bring confidence to BN to take back the state.
PAS has somewhat ‘neglected’ such method and in fact leave the state ‘undefended’ during the campaign period with Mentri Besar Nik Aziz Nik Mat focusing on Putrajaya and several other states lending support and credence to the party’s candidates.
Nik Aziz and other PAS leaders were only back Friday morning to attend the munajab and from then on begin campaigning in the state, far behind BN that has gone much ahead.
Issues that BN raised thus far are development and economy of the state while PAS counter with ‘begging’ the voters for another term for the state to focus on infra-structure and economic development.
With the current scenario where BN seems to be much ahead, PAS is banking on outside voters who are trickling back home to vote on Sunday.
On paper, there are some 15 percent of the 920,000-odd voters returning to cast their votes and majority of them are young and first time voters.
With a figure of about 130,000 returning to vote, PAS seems confident that these voters would tilt the balance favourable to the party and assume the party would retain the state.
The assumption is based on the 2008 general election where outside voters flooded the 45 state and 15 parliamentary seats which kept the party safe.
However, this time around, outside voters are not given allowances when boarding buses or whatever vehicles to return and with their own expenses, the reading on which party they would vote is blur.
Without specific ‘reading’ on the inclinations and exact numbers returning, PAS is in quite a limbo and BN, with its well-calculated monitoring and strategy seems to have an upper hand.
Today until Sunday, the political climate in Kelantan has turned hot and heaty as both sides of the political divide race to gain as much momentum as possible to reach out to their target audience.
For BN, the momentum picked up speed with care-taker Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak led the final onslaught from north of Kelantan in Pasir Puteh to south of the state in Tumpat on Thursday.
With Najib leading the charge, BN’s ‘foot soldiers’ double their strikes and the result will only be known by Sunday evening.
BN is confident of taking back the state while PAS, admitting an erosion of support is also confident retaining the state.

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