No official seat negotiations yet between Pakatan and Barisan for state polls, says Anwar

BUKIT MERTAJAM: The seat negotiations between Pakatan Harapan and Barisan Nasional to face the six state elections have not officially started, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said although he allowed discussions at the state level between the two coalitions, nothing has officially begun at the federal level.

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“Officially, no discussions at the federal level yet,” he said after attending the Majlis Kenduri Rakyat at Galeri Pejuang in his hometown at Cherok Tok Kun here on Monday (Jan 23) night.

The Tambun MP said if there are any suggestions on a date to start the discussions, he would expedite it.

Asked about PAS’ reluctance to discuss with Pakatan on holding the state polls together with the Pakatan-led governments, Anwar said it was the right of any party to decide when to hold the elections, adding that the matter is under the jurisdiction of the Election Commission.

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He, however, said if state elections were to be held separately, the cost incurred to hold the polls would increase.

The six states that will hold their polls this year are Pakatan-led Selangor, Negri Sembilan and Penang and PAS-led Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu.

Earlier, thousands gathered to welcome Anwar at his childhood home on Jalan Kilang Ubi in Cherok Tok Kun.

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This is the first time he visited the place after he was sworn in as the 10th Prime Minister last year.

In his speech, Anwar said there is a weakness in the country because corruption has been entrenched in the system.

He said to change the system, collective effort and strength are needed, and not based on the effort of a single person.

Also present during the event were Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, state executive councillors, the state PKR leadership and the state MCA leadership led by its chairman Datuk Tan Teik Cheng.