First and foremost, it has to be the choice of candidate. P.Kamalanathan has no track record yet of any wrongdoing, politically. He has slowly but surely been building a reputation for speaking his mind and establishing himself as amongst the young blood of the Malaysian Indian Congress.
The MIC whose fortunes politically had been gradually spent since 2004 following the recalcitrance of its beleaguered president, Dato Seri S.Samy Vellu who refuses to quit the chair despite his party's poor showing in the recent General Elections in 2008 where even he himself lost his seat in the P62 Sg Siput Parliamentary constituency to the PKR's Dr.Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj.
YB P.Kamalanathan's ability to project himself as a viable candidate for the BN as a whole could have been the reason as to why the BN's Chairman, UMNO President Dato Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak chose to field him over the other BN politicians there despite calls made to give the slot to UMNO Hulu Selangor leaders?
The failure of the MIC Deputy President, Dato G. Palanivel to retain the Hulu Selangor Parliamentary seat in the last GE despite having been voted into power for the last three general elections there could also have been a factor as to why the Prime Minister ignored or overlooked MIC President Dato Seri S. Samy Vellu's recommendations to the PM to field Dato G. Palanivel again as the BN's candidate there?
Lucky that PM Dato Seri Najib followed his heart and had not listened to Samy Vellu. If he had done that, the BN would surely have been trounced and beaten to a pulp by the enamored Pakatan Rakyat!
The Pakatan Rakyat had been prancing about ever since they won over 5 states from the BN and denied the BN its 2/3rd majority in the Malaysian House of Parliament for the first time since Independence.
Samy Vellu's continuance as the MIC President and his iron grip over the party has seen many potential Malaysian Indians who have all the leadership qualities in them to be the next generation of leaders staying away from the beleaguered Malaysian Indian political party for sheer reasons as not to end up as another of Samy Vellu's political kills during his long continuous reign there in the MIC.
If and when Samy Vellu and his aging team of kowtowing Malaysian Indian politicians finally relinquish their hold over the party, will the MIC get to see a new lineup of able and capable fresh new blood in one of the founding members of the Barisan Nasional coalition?
Failing which, it will be a gargantuan task for new faces like P.Kamalanathan to grow his political roots there in Hulu Selangor and slowly gain the trust of those who chose to vote for him over the PKR's Dato Zaid Ibrahim, a former UMNO Minister and Kota Bharu MP.
A classic David versus Goliath story come to life.
P.Kamalanathan was relatively unknown in the national political arena until this chance candidacy.
I came to know Kamalanathan online when he posted a series of rebuttals to me over the case of the Penang Free School's usage of Jawi in one of the historic school's front entrance facade. You can read of our exchanges here in the comments section.
I sensed back then that this fellow was one of those opinionated young chaps in the Putera MIC and that he would be one of the up and coming leaders of the MIC in the future.
I guess neither of us would have imagined him to be catapulted into the nation's political limelight this fast?
Anyway, he is now here as the freshly elected BN Member of Parliament for Hulu Selangor, in a state that is under the rule of the Selangor Pakatan Rakyat.
Quite a momentous task for the young man from the MIC. He would have to rely heavily on allocations from the BN Federal Government to finance his projects there in Hulu Selangor for I don't think Selangor PKR Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim would be so gung ho in channeling any such allocations to him from the Selangor State's coffers now, would he?
Back to the reasons as to why I say the BN won this P94 Hulu Selangor Parliamentary by election?
The BN's candidate is not known to be involved in any major issues or social-political-religious controversies so far.
The PR's candidate @ Dato Zaid Ibrahim is however reputed to be linked to many of such issues such as :
- being involved in his calling for special sports lotteries to be run to finance sports activities,
- his involvement in the much detested Inter Faith Commission set up proposals by those said to be quite liberal in their practice or professing of the Islamic faith
- his ownership of several racehorses and involvement in gambling,
- his reported case of alcoholism and other issues.
Picture Source : Malaysian Insider.
Failure of the former Pakatan Rakyat MP to solve many issues of the disgruntled Hulu Selangor folks since the Opposition Tripartite loose coalition took power over the parliamentary in the 12th GE.
Pitting the Malays against one another using religious issues etcetera backfired against the PR.
A thousand and one other underlying dissatisfaction's of those who voted for the PR in the last General Elections and a gradual loss of faith in the PKR following the many cases of its MP's and State Assembly representatives leaving the party citing various reasons of power-plays and infighting.
At the end of the day, both the BN and the PR have lots of brushing up to do and YB P.Kamalanathan has his tasks waiting at hand for him to practice what he has preached during the quite heated by election campaign.
Let's see if he has it in him to deliver as he has promised?