GE15: BN’s days of fielding a ‘songkok’ and expecting easy wins are gone, says Ismail Sabri

GE15: BN’s days of fielding a ‘songkok’ and expecting easy wins are gone, says Ismail Sabri

BAGAN DATUK,. Times have changed where Barisan Nasional (BN) cannot simply now field any candidate in an election and expect an easy win, Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said.

The prime minister said taking into account the challenging political situation and its polemics these days, BN, unlike in old times, has to work much harder and cannot afford to be in its comfort zone.

“In the past, when we contest we were sure to win, even if we fielded a ‘songkok’. But times are changing. GE14 (14th general election) clearly showed us that merely having the confidence to win easily and win big is no more enough.

“Unlike in the past, there is no more guarantee of an easy win. We now have to work very hard,” he said when launching the ‘Solidariti Kestabilan dan Kemakmuran BN’ programme here today.

Also present were BN chairman Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Perak BN chairman Datuk Seri Saarani Mohamad, BN component party leaders and members of the local community.

Ismail Sabri said BN was entering the GE15 ring merely not to fill the numbers but to win the polls with a handsome majority.

“We have to ensure BN becomes the dominant party in the new government. If BN wins just 30 to 40 seats, we will not be able to control the Cabinet.

“(When there is) at least 80 seats or two-thirds (majority), only then do we have enough power for others to listen to us. If the party is not strong and unable to dominate, it would be difficult to make decisions and control Putrajaya,” he said.

Ismail Sabri said Parliament was dissolved so that the people could elect a new government, but this decision had been misunderstood by the Opposition.

“When Parliament is dissolved, the Opposition should in fact be pleased as there had been many accusations about the government’s legitimacy.

“So, let the people decide now who should form the government. Out of the blue, they (the opposition) are not agreeing to Parliament being dissolved to the extent they want the matter taken to court. I do not understand what they really want,” he said.

— Bernama

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