Saturday, 24th May 2014
Ramkarpal the late Karpal Singh third son is expected to win Bukit Gelugor by-election but the big question is whether he can win with bigger majority compare to his late father. Let's all wait for the result which is going to be known tomorrow, Sunday, 25th May 2014.
Since he was nominated on May 12 until today, DAP Bukit Gelugor candidate Ramkarpal Singh Deo’s daily schedule has been packed with programmes from dawn till long past midnight.
Today, the last day of campaigning before voters head to cast their ballots tomorrow, was no exception.
Despite the mega ceramah at Han Chiang High that went on well past the witching hour, the 38-year-old was up at the crack of dawn today to begin his final round of markets visits — popular haunts on the weekend — to meet and greet his potential future constituents.
“From Day One, I’ve not had a moment of rest due to the back-to-back programmes,” the lawyer told The Malay Mail Online during a rare break on his marathon campaign trail at the DAP Bukit Gelugor operations centre here.
The third son of the late Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh was kept on a fast-paced punishing schedule to make his presence felt almost everywhere. It worked. He was warmly received at all the events he attended.
Most of the constituents acted familiar with the political greenhorn, albeit as “Karpal’s son”.
Wherever he went, crowds flocked, curious and eager for an up-close-and-personal glimpse of the man who would inherit the mantle of the Tiger of Jelutong, as Karpal was known for decades.
Ramkarpal was frequently stopped on his walkabout with requests for group photos. Some even asked for his autograph on the DAP Bukit Gelugor pamphlets that were being handed.
In the absence of contest from the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition in the Bukit Gelugor race, Ramkarpal believed he is likely to take the MP’s hat but played down his confidence, voicing his biggest fear that the number of voters may not be as many of the turnout in last year’s general election.
“Voters turnout is really a major concern as some, who are outstation, may not even come back to vote. We need to reach out to as many voters as possible to get them to come out to vote,” Ramkarpal said.
The Bukit Gelugor parliamentary seat, covering three state constituencies of Paya Terubong, Air Itam and Seri Delima, was triggered by Karpal’s sudden demise after a car crash last month.
The constituency, with 82,431 registered voters, is a DAP stronghold after Karpal wrested it from MCA in 2004. He had retained the seat in the last two general elections with bigger vote majorities each time, garnering 42,706 vote majority last year.
By the second week, the party realised that many constituents, especially those in the low income group areas of Air Itam and Paya Terubong, were not aware that they are within the Bukit Gelugor constituency.
The party had started sending out postcards to all registered voters with information of their voting centres to encourage them to come out to vote.
At the DAP ceramah, held mostly twice a night at two different locations within residential areas, the party had been constantly reminding registered voters to turn up at the polling centres and cast their ballot tomorrow.
Karpal had garnered a total 56,303 votes last year while MCA’s Teh Beng Yeam got 13,597 votes.
The only real hurdle that may trip the party in its quest to secure a rousing victory would be the low numbers that often plague by-elections compared to a general elections.
The voters turnout last general election was 86.3 per cent, one of the highest in the country.
Ramkarpal is facing a four-corner fight against Parti Cinta Malaysia’s Datuk Huan Cheng Guan and independent candidates Mohd Nabi Bux Mohd Sathar and Abu Backer Sidek Mohammad Zan.