World Media

Mahathir-led opposition declares victory

Mahathir-led opposition declares victory

Official results from Malaysia's national election show the opposition alliance led by the country's former veteran ruler Mahathir Mohamad has won a majority in parliament, ending the 60-year rule of the National Front.

A record 2,333 candidates have filed nomination papers to contest 222 parliamentary and 505 assembly seats in 12 states.

The opposition also made strong gains in Sarawak state on Borneo island, a long-time BN stronghold.

"I urge you all to join the people's movement to demand for change", Anwar said in a statement late on Monday from a hospital in Kuala Lumpur, the capital, where he is recovering from a shoulder operation.

"This is a repudiation of Najib's government from all walks of life from the very rural northern states to the more industrial southern coast", she said.

"These people are good people who will ensure a good government, not like Najib's government", Mahathir told reporters after casting his vote.

A total of 8,253 polling stations open at 8am and close at 5pm.

The US Justice Department says $4.5bn was looted from the 1MBD investment fund by associates of the prime minister between 2009 and 2014, including $700m that landed in Najib's bank account.

Similarly, Najib's plans for infrastructure projects and a pivot toward China could be in jeopardy if victory goes to Mahathir, Mumford said.

Barcelona coach Valverde defends Bartomeu over Griezmann transfer comments
Bartomeu also stressed that Barcelona share a very good relationship with Atletico officials. They will face Marseille in the final at Parc Olympique Lyonnais on 16 May.

However, Mahathir is a polarising figure and many voters are suspicious of him because of his attacks on independent institutions when he was prime minister between 1981 and 2003.

Nawab, the scholar, said there was a small chance that neither BN nor the opposition secures a majority, which would bring a "hung parliament" and potentially put the Islamic Parti Islam se-Malaysia (PAS) in the position of kingmaker.

Malaysia's Human Rights Commission says the recent redrawing of electoral boundaries, which opposition parties said favored the ruling coalition, is an "epic breach" of democracy.

Mahathir had earlier accused the Election Commission of delaying the release of results "because we believe from our unofficial counting that they (BN) are left far behind and the likelihood is that they will not be forming the government". Corruption is an issue over which opposition leaders easily connect with people, which in turn helps unify the lower-income groups.

Najib cast his ballot in his home constituency of Pekan, Pahang state.

"Once [Anwar] is pardoned, he will be eligible to stand as prime minister". At the last election in 2013, the turnout was around 85 percent.

Dr Mahathir's stunning defeat of the ruling coalition means that at the age of 92, he will become the oldest elected leader in the world.

Yet the perennial race card in Malaysian politics, that an opposition victory would pave the way for ethnic minority Chinese to dominate the country politically, is still a powerful subterranean force.

However, under Malaysia's electoral system, the party or alliance with the majority of parliament seats wins, and going into the poll most experts had believed that was within the prime minister's reach.


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