KUCHING, Oct 12: Former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has won the Port Dickson by-election with a whopping 23,560 vote-majority.
The Pakatan Harapan de facto leader garnered 31,016 votes to secure a return to Parliament in a seven-cornered fight that included Negeri Sembilan’s former Menteri Besar Tan Sri Isa Samad, who stood as an Independent, as well as former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan.
Despite a lower voters turnout that fell short of the 70 per cent Election Commission (EC) target, the 71-year-old Anwar took victory by storm, with Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) candidate Lt Col (Rtd) Mohd Nazari Mokhtar a distant second with 7,456 votes.
Ex-Umno stalwart Isa registered 4,230 votes, while Mohd Saiful, who accused the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) leader of sodomising him and resulted in Anwar’s second jail term in 2015, received 82 votes.
The win could pave the way for Anwar, the PKR president-elect, to eventually ascend to fulfil a plan by the ruling Pakatan coalition to make him the 8th prime minister.
The other three independent candidates, Lau Seck Yan, Stevie Chan Keng Leong and Kan Chee Yuen, received 214, 337 and 154 votes respectively.
The Port Dickson parliamentary seat went vacant after previous MP, Datuk Danyal Balagopal Abdullah of PKR, stepped down voluntarily to allow Anwar to contest.
The seat was considered a Pakatan stronghold, as Danyal registered 36,224 votes to win a three-cornered fight in GE14 with a 17,710-vote majority. — DayakDaily