State polls: BN to contest 45% of seats, PH 55% – Ahmad Zahid

CHUKAI – Barisan Nasional (BN) is expected to contest 45 per cent of the 245 state seats in the six state elections, while the rest will be contested by Pakatan Harapan (PH).

BN chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the decision was made based on the seats won by BN and PH in the last general election.

“This is based on the existing seats. That’s why component parties in PH get more.

“We will announce the statistics when everything is finalised,” he told reporters at the Aidiladha ‘Korban Perdana’ sacrificial ceremony and people’s feast organised by BN at Pantai Penunjuk near here today.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, said BN would contest more than 100 state seats and the final decision would be made by him and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim soon.

The elections in six states involve 36 state constituencies in Kedah, Kelantan (45), Terengganu (32), Penang (40), Selangor (56) and Negeri Sembilan (36).

“The prime minister and I will discuss for the last time next week for all six states…we have also been able to resolve overlapping seats.

“God willing, we will also name the candidates for the seats allocated to BN and PH. The political bureau has decided that for each state constituency, the state liaison committee will suggest at least three candidates,” he said.

Ahmad Zahid said evaluation and selection of the candidates would be based on qualities such as commitment, integrity, capability and winnability.

“It’ll be based on the chances of winning, acceptability and voters’ support.

“After being shortlisted, we will also do a health screening to determine that each candidate is ‘clean’ in terms of appearance, physicality and has a good level of health,” he said.

Regarding the criteria of selection of the candidates, Ahmad Zahid said the young people are being emphasised, to prove that the BN-PH government listens to the pulse of young voters.

“This has been proven in the Melaka and Johor polls. This is what new voters, who are in the age group of 40 and below, especially 18, 19 and 20 years old, want.

“In this matter, BN, especially UMNO, consider this an important element to achieve victory in the state polls,” he said.

He added that component party machinery in the Unity Government would be launched starting July 7 in Selangor, followed by other states. – Bernama