PUTRAJAYA,. Former Negri Sembilan Mentri Besar Tan Sri Isa Samad expressed shock that PKR president-elect Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had chosen to run in the Port Dickson by-election.
In an interview with English daily New Straits Times, Isa said Anwar had the option of contesting in Permatang Pauh, Pandan or even other seats which PKR lawmakers had offered to vacate to make way for him.
“For me, if he (Anwar) is surprised to see me running, then I would be surprised as well seeing him running for Port Dickson.
“He has Permatang Pauh and Pandan. Some even offered Nibong Tebal and Sungai Petani. Why did he choose Port Dickson?” he asked.
The Permatang Pauh seat is held by Anwar’s daughter, Nurul Izzah Anwar, while the Pandan seat is held by his wife, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
Isa is running as an independent candidate in the Port Dickson by-election along with Anwar and five other candidates.
He reiterated that he left Umno because he views that the Barisan Nasional (BN) should not have boycotted the by-election.
“I see it is a good opportunity for BN. Win or lose, that is not important. But it can be a platform for us to convey our views and criticism of the government, a platform to be an effective Opposition.
“I’m not contesting against Umno. I’m going against Umno’s traditional enemies—PKR and PAS. Umno has been against PKR for 20 years and 60 years with PAS.
“Of course, if Umno is contesting, that would be a different story. So there is no reason for BN and Umno members not to support me because I’m not going against them,” he said.
Isa also explained that he intended to improve the local infrastructure and tourism in Port Dickson if he were to win.