- Berita Daily
The NGO predicts the outcome of the Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar by-elections on past track records, especially the 13th general election
KUALA LUMPUR: Kuasa chief executive Praba Ganesan today said that the 'goodies' effect from the federal government is far less compelling in Selangor due to the state's positive track record and vice-versa for Perak.
The NGO that focuses on organisational development for politicians utilising social media and strategic messaging made the remark based on both the states' performance in key areas since the last general election.
“After three years it is clear that Selangor is performing far better than Perak despite having an acrimonious menteri besar change in the period and an uncertain coalition cobbled together and ambling along,” said Praba in a statement presenting the report on Perak and Selangor state governments since the 2013 general election.
He pointed out that despite Perak pledging 82 items while Selangor only 54 items as manifesto to win the 2013 state election, Perak's pledges showed a litany of "low hanging fruits" which were never at risk of being completed when compared to Selangor.
Perak appear to fix the game to look good without providing considerable benefit, said Praba.
"For example Perak’s monthly allocation of free water (20 cubic metres) is for the poor only without stipulating who falls under this category. While Selangor (not part of its 2013 pledges) offers free water (20 cubic metres) to all state homes without exception.
"While pundits are mixed about giving free water, and that will remain debatable, but what Selangor pledged in 2008 can be means tested, while Perak sets itself up in a way it has wriggle room," said Praba.
Kuasa scored each item based on weighted average of state government’s assessment (50%), state opposition’s assessment (20%) and three stakeholders relevant to the pledge’s assessment (30%).
However, if Kuasa can verify adequate rate of completion, then the item gets a 100% score without the need to factor state, opposition or stakeholders. For example, the offer of RM500 financial aid for newly-weds in Selangor.
"When evaluating them, the average for completion for Selangor was 73% and Perak 31%. It appears when those promises which are substantial and matter considerably to residents of the states, Selangor performs much better than Perak," said Praba.
General observations for Perak
Kuasa's general observations for Perak found that the state is 'failing' in its economy thrust in regards to pledges.
"To be fair to Perak, the state budget is considerably smaller than Selangor but the state shares power with the federal government and should be able to utilise federal mechanisms and funding to achieve state goals.
"It is failing in its economy thrust when it comes to pledges. The high-tech hubs, SME assistance and developing the five economic zones for example have been muted. The state government does not shed much light to the matter except mentioning that progress will arrive," said Praba.
Regarding the Kuala Kangsar by-election on June 18, Kuasa finds that four out of the five commitments made by BN candidate Mastura Mohd Yazid are unspecific and appear to be put together by threading all the incoming changes in the are regardless of the election outcome.
Mastura's commitments are to upgrade Kolej University Islam Sultan Azlan Shah to a public university; speed up approval for the Manong bridge; submit an application to expand Jalan Manong-Kuala Kangsar; upgrade the Kuala Kangsar Hospital to a specialist hospital and develop Sungai Perak as a tourism hub.
"It is important to note that four of the latter promises are unspecific and appear to be put together by threading all the incoming changes in Kuala Kangsar regardless of the election outcome.
"Kuasa would like to point out its disappointment that the candidate hijacks one of the 82 promises by the Perak government in 2013, to promote the status of Kolej University Islam Sultan Azlan Shah.
“For three years neither Perak government nor the administration of the college were able to tell what was transpiring with the promise, and out of the blue Mastura promises the same promise by the state government and Prime Minister Najib Razak announces within 48 hours on June 10, that the college has been promoted to a university with immediate effect.
"Does this mean it is an achievement for the Perak government since they allegedly have been working for it for three year, or can Mastura claim credit wholly for it and suggest that Perak state government has not been doing its job?
"Or can both Perak state government and Mastura both claim credit for the rushed decision by the federal government?," questioned Praba.
Kuasa, however is glad with the RM49 million allocated for flood mitigation in Kuala Kangsar.
"This is a clear gain from the by-election for the people following flooding in late 2014 and early 2015 which left much of Kuala Kangsar inundated by water for weeks.
"The goodies will likely result in the BN candidate winning, especially with no real policy from either PAS or Amanah candidate," said Praba.
Observations in Sungai Besar
Meanwhile in Sungai Besar, while everyone is discussing the vote split by PAS and Amanah, it is important to note that pro “not BN” sentiments are high in the state of Selangor, and the positive track record by eight years of Pakatan cannot be immediately undone, said Praba.
"Half of Sungai Besar is Sekinchan, and the assemblyman Ng Suee Lim has bolstered support since his initial win in 2008.
"The township is vibrant and development has not been neglected in that area and in BN candidate Budiman’s Sungai Panjang state constituency.
"The goodies effect from the federal government is far less compelling when the region is not economically starving.
"If this was a straight fight, the BN candidate will be struggling as Umno’s fortune in the state has been dwindling," said Praba.
Kuasa expects a stronger than expected performance from the two non-BN candidates, and the BN candidate, if he were to win, might come in with 45% or less of the votes, said Praba.
"Kuasa believes the state’s track record is a bigger effect than seen by others," he added.