Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi

KUCHING: Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s claim that he has a solid and convincing majority support in Parliament will definitely swing the ground sentiment in favour of Parti Warisan in the Sabah state election, opined Socio-political analyst Professor Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi.

He said it would serve as a catalyst to force Perikatan Nasional (PN) to quick thinking and take things up another level to influence voters.

“It will improve Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal’s chances at keeping the state under Warisan control.

“On the other hand, it seems that PN is threatened and they must ensure a win before the formation of a new government,” he pointed out.

The political bombshell declaration, however, has met with scepticism from observers due to the severe impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Whether the announcement was just a manoeuvre to confuse voters, Awang Azman said if Anwar could provide proof of his claim and finally take over power, he too, would inherit an economy that suffered badly since the financial crisis in 1997.

He opined that Anwar was concerned on the need for a stable government to be able to see Malaysia through this pandemic, not just by focusing on the bread and butter issues.

“Of course, Anwar has long harboured ambitions to be prime minister.

“But more than that, Anwar aspires to initiate deep reforms in institutions including Parliament, as well as the economy in order to see a fairer distribution of the nation’s wealth.

“If he were to become PM, it would mark the culmination of a more than two-decade journey, from Reformasi in 1998 to today.

“And it would also make him the first PM from a multiracial, multi-religious party – a first in Malaysia’s history,” he reckoned.

On the Sabah polls, Awang Azman who is in Sabah, observed Shafie Afdal was having a slight lead over PN.

“As of two days ago, Warisan led PN very slightly. However, Muhyiddin’s arrival in Sabah last night and today could change voter’s behaviour.

“And this depends on the frequency of having a face-to-face campaign. The more you interact face to face the higher your chances of winning.

“The only question now is the amount of time and opportunity with the time constraint before the ballots are cast,” he added.