PORT DICKSON, Jan 25 — Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the coalition is prepared to field young candidates in the upcoming Johor state election.

Anwar said the central leadership would discuss the matter with Johor PH.

“Let me tell you, our approach is that candidates must be strong, young and include women. Then we will seek to get all (component) parties involved.

“Of course, we will have young candidates from among our youth leadership,” he told reporters after an engagement session with young people at a restaurant here today.

Anwar, who is Port Dickson Member of Parliament, urged the Election Commission (EC) to conduct the state election without restrictions this time, saying PH’s strategy of face-to-face meetings with the people has been its strength.

Anwar also said if PH cooperated with other opposition parties, they could defeat the Umno-led Barisan Nasional (BN).

Anwar, who is PKR president, believed the opposition parties could work together if they were consistent in fighting issues such as abuse of power and corruption.

He said although the government called for the snap polls in the belief that it could win big, PH had its own strategy to defeat them.

The media today reported Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin as saying that PH’s desire to cooperate with other opposition parties for the Johor polls would only lead to a repeat of the failed formula of the PH government after the last general election.

Prior to the dissolution of the Johor State Legislative Assembly on Saturday, the BN-led government held 28 seats while PH had 27 seats. The Kempas seat was left vacant following the death of its state assemblyman, former Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian, on December 21 last year.

The EC is meeting on February 9 to fix the dates for the snap polls. — Bernama