As campaigning for the 15th General Election (GE15) warms up, parties have resorted to all sorts of tactics in order to gain momentum
Take, for example, Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Barisan Nasional (BN), where the former is campaigning against the latter to discourage voters from picking any BN candidates as it would translate into a vote for Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is allegedly eyeing the post of the Prime Minister.
The UMNO president, however, has denied the allegations, saying Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob remains BN’s choice for the post of prime minister if the coalition manages to win GE15.
Regardless, the message “a vote for BN is a vote for Zahid” has gained more traction in the days after Khairy Jamaluddin filed his nomination papers to contest the Sungai Buloh parliamentary seat.
While Khairy has tried to rubbish the messaging, several PH candidates have explicitly told voters that voting for Khairy is indeed a vote for the UMNO president to be appointed Prime Minister.
“It’s irrelevant whether he’s a nice guy or a bad guy. It’s who he represents. When you vote for Khairy, you actually vote for Zahid,” PKR’s R Sivarasa warned the constituents in Sungai Buloh.
Similarly, Fahmi Fadzil, who is the PKR information chief, tweeted the same message the other day.
Undi KJ = Undi Zahid
— Fahmi Fadzil (@fahmi_fadzil) November 8, 2022
So last night, 8 November, while addressing the Sungai Buloh voters during a ceramah, Khairy changed the narrative around the messaging
The 46-year-old told a 900-strong crowd that voting for him is actually voting for the future Prime Minister of Malaysia as he would like to, one day, become the leader of the government and develop the country.
Khairy was, however, careful to emphasise that if BN wins GE15, Ismail will be the prime minister.
“One day I want to lead UMNO, one day I want to be your prime minister, but I must win Sungai Buloh first. Not now. My brother, Ismail Sabri, will be the Prime Minister. I am 46 years old and I can wait,” he said, adding that he hopes he wouldn’t have to wait too long before he could lead UMNO and the country.
According to Khairy, if the voters in Sungai Buloh support him in GE15, where he is contesting for the first time, it will give him the confidence to tell UMNO and he can go for “the dragon’s den”.
For the record, this is not the first time that Khairy has signalled that he wants to lead UMNO.
Right after BN was voted out by the people in GE14, Khairy ran for UMNO presidency against Zahid in the 2018 party elections. But he lost. UMNO will hold its party election six months after GE15.
Watch Khairy’s remarks to Sungai Buloh voters:
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