KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia The Barisan Nasional (BN) is poised to retain federal power in what is seen as one of the keenly contested elections ever in the country’s political history, according to a survey by independent pollster Merdeka Centre.
The survey showed that the BN coalition will win 100 of the 222 parliamentary seats at stake, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) alliance will win 83 seats and PAS will be left with two seats, leaving the contests in 37 seats too close to call.
Based on the survey results and assuming a smooth election process on May 9, 2018, we found that BN presently retains a sizeable seat advantage over rivals PH and PAS, the centre said in a statement yesterday.
It said that as of noon yesterday (May 8), Malay support for BN was at 44.3 per cent, PH 27.6 per cent and PAS 28.1 per cent while Chinese support for BN was 15.8 per cent, PH 84.2 per cent and PAS negligible.
The statement said BN had 41.3 per cent of Indian support while PH and PAS had 56.5 per cent and 28.1 per cent, respectively.
However, the pollster said things could still change in the last few hours of campaigning.
The poll also found out that the top three issues considered most important to the voters were economic concerns, at 43 per cent, followed by good governance/corruption issues at 21 per cent and weakness of leadership at 8 per cent.
Merdeka Centre said GE14 was propelled by a voter revolt over the Goods and Services Tax (GST) as well as concerns over the rising cost of living, running parallel with perceived governance shortfalls.
Cost of living and governance were top voters’ concerns, the centre said.
The pollster said Malay voters expressed the highest concern about economic issues (46 per cent), followed by good governance issues (17 per cent) while Chinese voters placed equal emphasis on economic (37 per cent) and corruption issues (35 per cent).
Indian voters also had high concern for economic issues (43 per cent) and the survey placed the need for better treatment towards the Indian community at 15 per cent.
On the other hand, younger voters, those below 40 years old, were more concerned about matters related to good governance and leadership, while voters over 40 years expressed slightly higher concerns over communal rights (11 per cent).
Merdeka Centre said the respondents were selected on the basis of a random stratified sampling along ethnicity, gender and parliamentary constituencies.
The interviews were carried out in the preferred language of the respondents. These surveys were funded internally by the Merdeka Centre for Opinion Research for release to the public, it said.
The centre said its election modelling method was based on national- and state-level surveys, augmented by seat-specific historical ethnic voting patterns, turnout estimates and adjustment factors for party strength and candidate quality.–NNN-BERNAMA
Source: NAM News Network