KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 11 — The 13th general election will be called after Chinese New Year, Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin predicted today, because the major festivals celebrated in multicultural Malaysia would be done with by then.
“We have celebrated Raya Haji, after this we will be celebrating
Deepavali and Christmas. Then next year, the Chinese community will be
celebrating their new year.
“But let us not forget the biggest festival for the people, which is
the victory for the Barisan Nasional (BN) in the most important
celebration that is after the Chinese New Year,” the Federal Territories
Minister said after officiating the 1 Malaysia For Youth (1M4U) launch
here this afternoon.
The Lunar New Year festival is expected to fall on February 10 next
year. The Chinese community typically celebrate it for 15 days.
Hindus will celebrate Deepavali on Tuesday while Muslims will usher
in Awal Muharram, the Islamic new year, on Thursday. Christians
celebrate Christmas on December 25.
However, Nong Chik was quick to add that the date was only his
forecast and the decision to call for elections was with Prime Minister
Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Raja Nong Chik is the first Cabinet member to give a clear indication of when the long-awaited election may take place.
His prediction echoes the forecast of Malay nationalist group Perkasa
president, Datuk Ibrahim Ali, who in September signalled that national
polls will be held only after the lunar new year as the ruling Barisan
Nasional (BN) needed time to woo Chinese voters, many of whom swung
towards the opposition parties in the landmark Election 2008.
“Now, Datuk Najib’s government is really focusing on winning the
Chinese community’s votes, and of course the Chinese New Year
celebrations can be used with various programmes such as open house and
so on, so in February.
“I hold on to my view, my prediction that elections will be held after Chinese New Year in 2013,” Ibrahim told The Malaysian Insider in an interview then.
He also said the prime minister would not be calling for the election
in November as it is the exam month for students and the monsoon
“I hear the SPR (Election Commission) has administrative duties that
are not yet settled, need more time,” Ibrahim, who is also the
Independent MP for Pasir Mas, had said.
The Malaysian Insider previously reported that BN was
looking at November polls, which is within 60 days of Budget 2013 being
tabled, shortly after Najib pointed out the coincidences of events based
on multiples of 11, his favourite number.
The BN mandate expires next April and Parliament will automatically
dissolve then, paving the way for elections, unless it is called
The law provides for a general election every five years but this is
the closest to a full term the BN government has come to without giving a
firm date for the polls.
Post a Comment