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Malaysia sets polling day for State Elections in six states on 12 August

MALAYSIA — The Election Commission (EC) has set 12 August as the polling day for the State Elections (PRN) in Malaysia involving six states, namely Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Pulau Pinang, Kedah, Kelantan, and Terengganu.

Meanwhile, the dates for candidate nomination and early voting have been scheduled for 29 July and 8 August, respectively.

The Chairman of the EC, Tan Sri Abdul Ghani Salleh, announced these important dates on Wednesday (5 Jul) and stated that more than 9.7 million eligible voters will fulfill their responsibility in the upcoming State Elections in these six states.

The mentioned six states did not hold their state elections concurrently with the 15th General Election (GE15) on 19 November last year.

Therefore, the EC has decided to hold the 15th State Elections to fill the following assemblies: 36 State Legislative Assemblies (Dewan Undangan Negeri, DUN) in Kedah, 45 DUN in Kelantan, 32 DUN in Terengganu, 40 DUN in Pulau Pinang, 56 DUN in Selangor, and 36 DUN in Negeri Sembilan.

“For the purpose of conducting the State Elections, the EC has determined the following important dates: the issuance of the writ on 5 Jul, the candidate nomination day on 29 July, the early voting day on 8 August, and the polling day on 12 August,” he said during the press conference at the EC Tower on Wednesday.

Abdul Ghani chaired a Special EC Meeting earlier to determine the important dates for the State Elections after receiving the official dissolution notices from the Speakers of the respective State Legislative Assemblies.

Earlier, the media reported that Selangor officially dissolved its State Legislative Assembly on 23 June to make way for the State Elections.

Meanwhile, Kelantan dissolved its State Legislative Assembly on 22 June; Terengganu, Pulau Pinang, and Kedah dissolved theirs on 28 June; and Negeri Sembilan dissolved its State Legislative Assembly on 1 July.

A total of 245 State Legislative Assembly seats in the six states will be contested in this PRN.

Six State Elections will be an indicator for the next General Election in 2026

Malaysia has been embroiled in political turmoil for the past four years, culminating in the infamous “Sheraton Move” in 2020 that led to the downfall of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government – which ended Barisan Nasional’s (BN) dominance in Malaysia that had lasted for over half a century.

Following the conclusion of the Malaysia 15th General Election (GE15) in November 2022, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s PH coalition garnered 82 parliamentary seats while Perikatan National (PN) led by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin won 73 seats.

BN suffered its worst electoral outcome in history, securing only 30 seats out of the 177 seats contested. UMNO won 26 out of 120 seats contested, while MCA gained only two seats out of 44 contested seats.

Neither PH nor PN holds enough seats to form a simple majority government.

UMNO, BN’s leading component party, unanimously decided to comply with the King’s order to support the unity government idea, which made the alliance between PH and BN possible.

Muhyiddin Yassin had refused to cooperate with PH to form unity government.

The impasse of the hung parliament was resolved on 24 November when the Malaysia King announced that Anwar Ibrahim had gained enough support and was officially appointed as Malaysia’s 10th Prime Minister.

However, the GE15 has shown the Malay support to PN led by Muhyiddin Yassin is relatively high.

The states of Kelantan, Terengganu, and Kedah are governed by the Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS), which is a member of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition along with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) and Parti Gerakan Malaysia (Gerakan).

On the other hand, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, and Penang are governed by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition, which currently leads the unity government.

In the upcoming Six State Elections, the PH coalition will be collaborating with their former rivals, BN. This electoral alliance is seen by many as a critical test for the unity government’s stability and effectiveness.

These state elections will be an indicator for the next General Election in 2026, and the results will show how satisfied people are with the Unity Government.

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