Selangor Journal
Party flags deck the road ahead of the 15th general election in Kuala Lumpur, on November 12, 2022. — Picture by BERNAMA

26 seats to see fierce battle, including three in Selangor — Ilham Centre

By Nasuha Badrul Huzaini

SHAH ALAM, Nov 18 — A total of 26 parliamentary seats in the 15th general election (GE15) will see fierce competition with hard-to-determine results due to several factors, including the popularity of their candidates, says Ilham Centre.

The seats are Kangar, Arau, Pokok Sena, Kulim Bandar Baharu, Ketereh, Bukit Gantang, Sungai Buloh, Temerloh, Sungai Besar, Kuala Selangor, Tampin, Ayer Hitam, Kudat, Putatan, Penampang, Sipitang, Kinabatangan, Tawau, Kalabakan, Sri Aman, Lubok Antu, Igan, Sarikei, Miri, Kimanis and Lawas.

The independent research firm said the percentage of fence-sitters for these seats is relatively high, with most of them planning to decide on whom to vote for at the last minute.

“This has made it hard to predict the results for the said seats because of the neck-to-neck fighting and last-minute swings.

“Whichever party manages to get the last-minute swing votes will be the winner. The decision would cause an upset either to favourite candidates or a specific party,” said Ilham Centre in a research titled Voters’ Support Pattern and the 15th General Election Prediction (Pola Sokongan Pengundi dan Prediksi Pilihan Raya Umum ke-15).

The research was conducted for three weeks beginning from October 30 to November 17 involving 1,211 respondents.

The respondents covered all segments of gender, race, age, economic background, education level, income range and locality.

Ilham Centre also predicted that no single coalition would be able to get a simple majority of 112 seats and form a government of its own after the election.

However, it is anticipated that Pakatan Harapan (Harapan) will win the most seats with 86, followed by Barisan Nasional (BN) (51 seats) and Perikatan Nasional (PN) (25 seats).

“Harapan’s dominance in urban and mixed seats has become its core strength in a three-cornered tactical battle.

“Higher Malay votes for PN would give an advantage to Harapan to maintain its domination in the areas.

“As for PN, they will give a tough challenge to BN in the Malay majority areas because of the latter’s scattered strength. However, it is difficult to overthrow BN,” the research firm said.

Meanwhile, Ilham Centre said the GE15 will see participation from seven million first-time voters who are classified as “wild voters”.

“All parties are vying for the attention of this particular group of people. Throughout the campaign and field research, they are not hesitant to share their political preferences publicly.

“There is no such thing as ‘your vote is a secret’ for them. The tendency to decide on whom to vote for varies based on their demography and localities,” it said.

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