PETALING JAYA: The Kedah Amanah chief who was expelled by his party has spoken out against DAP for insisting on contesting the Malay-majority Jerai parliamentary seat.
Datuk Phahrolrazi Mohd Zawawi (pic) said he had wanted the seat in Kedah, which was allocated to DAP under Pakatan Harapan, to be returned to Amanah before nomination day for the 15th General Election (GE15).
He said the seat had become a bone of contention between Kedah Amanah and the central leadership because it was not meant for DAP, which will be fielding its deputy state chief Zulhazmi Shariff.
Phahrolrazi said according to the initial agreement, its coalition partner PKR would contest nine parliamentary seats and Amanah six.
However, DAP then requested the Baling and Jerai seats, he said.
“DAP continued to demand and said it has Malays in the party,” he told a press conference in Yan, Kedah, after his sacking earlier yesterday.He pointed out that about 80% of the voters in Jerai were Malays and they could not “accept DAP”.
“It is not that we don’t like DAP, but we will have to take into account the voters’ sentiment,” he added.
He said the issue had been going on for almost a month, adding that the Jerai seat was swapped with DAP’s Alor Gajah seat in Melaka, where former Melaka chief minister Adly Zahari was scheduled to contest it for Amanah.
Phahrolrazi said the Amanah state liaison committee had communicated its firm stance to the central leadership, even to the extent of wanting to pull out of GE15 if the seat was given to DAP.
While acknowledging that DAP was a good ally of Amanah, he said Jerai should not be turned into a testing ground for Malay electoral acceptance of DAP.
The state assemblyman for Alor Mengkudu admitted that he was shocked by the action but did not regret it or feel sad about it, adding that he would not be appealing against his sacking from the party.
In a statement yesterday, Amanah secretary-general Datuk Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli said the party’s national management committee had made the decision to dismiss Phahrolrazi after he was found to have “violated the party’s constitution, disobeyed party decisions and carried out acts that were against the interests of the party”.
In Kuala Lumpur, Amanah chief Mohamad Sabu said action was taken against Phahrolrazi because his actions had the potential to worsen the situation as Pakatan prepared for GE15.