Updated at 10:40pm, 11 Oct 2009
PORT DICKSON, 11 Oct 2009: The Barisan Nasional (BN) retained the Bagan Pinang state seat in Negeri Sembilan after its candidate Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad defeated PAS candidate Zulkefly Mohamad Omar with a majority of 5,435 votes.
Isa polled 8,013 votes while Zulkefly obtained 2,578 votes in today’s by-election, the ninth since the March 2008 general election.
Isa secured a 5,435-vote majority, compared with the 2,333-vote majority garnered by former BN assemblyperson Azman Mohammad, whose death necessitated the by-election.
The victory is seen as significant to BN as it could inspire the coalition to regain lost ground after its dismal performance in the 2008 general election.
Although the by-election was held on a weekend, it could only muster a voter turnout of 82%. There were 223 spoilt votes.
BN supporters erupted into cheers when the results were announced by returning officer Abdul Wahab Shamsuddin at the Port Dickson Municipal Council hall at 8:03pm.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Negeri Sembilan Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, and Isa raised their arms as they took the stage to the shouts of “Hidup Barisan!”
Zulkefly and PAS supporters were not seen in the hall.
PAS accepts defeat
Later, however, PAS said it accepted its defeat but stated that postal votes were a factor for its failure to wrest the seat away from the BN.
PAS vice-president and the party’s Bagan Pinang election director, Salahuddin Ayub, claimed that the party’s loss was caused by the “fear factor” of gangsterism that made it difficult for the party to reach 13,664 voters in the area.
“PAS accepts the decision but remains committed to striving for a more transparent postal vote system,” he told reporters after the result was announced.
For postal votes comprising ballots from both the military and the police, BN had 3,521 votes while PAS had 601 votes. — Bernama
|Bagan Pinang 11 Oct 2009 by-election
|Isa Abdul Samad||Umno/BN||8,013|
|Zulkefly Mohamad Omar||PAS||2,578|
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