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Nizar to contest in Bukit Gantang

Azmin Ali (PKR)

Ngeh Koo Ham (DAP)

BUKIT GANTANG, March 23 — Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin has been named as Pas’s candidate for the Bukit Gantang by-elections in what is clearly an attempt by Pakatan Rakyat (PR) to go for broke. Speculation had been building since Perak DAP leaders first suggested his candidacy soon after Barisan Nasional’s Feb 5 power grab in the state.The ousted menteri besar of Perak will now run in what PR has billed as a referendum on the legitimacy of both coalition’s claims to power in the Perak.

In a rally held tonight in Simpang, just outside of Taiping, the nearest town to Bukit Gantang, Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang announced that Nizar would stand in the April 7 polls. By putting Nizar as a candidate, PR has signalled its intention to use the by-election as a potential springboard to wrest the state government back from BN even as it continues its legal challenges to Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir’s appointment as MB. But the Nizar candidacy also represents a big risk because a defeat will all but bring an end to PR’s claims that it commands the support of the majority in Perak.


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