KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 — Terengganu Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Samsuri Mokhtar has won the by-election for the Kemaman parliamentary seat in the state for PAS with a whopping vote-majority of more than 37,000 votes, based on official results from the Election Commission (EC).

In the straight fight against Barisan Nasional candidate Gen (Rtd) Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor who won 27,778 votes, Samsuri won 64,998 votes with a vote majority of 37,220 votes.

In a brief video clip of his maiden speech upon winning the Kemaman seat, Samsuri thanked the voters, PAS’ party workers and election machinery, as well as all public personnel — including from the police, the Fire and Rescue Department, the EC, the Health Ministry — who were involved in the election process.

“God willing, what we faced today in Kemaman with such a huge majority — the result of your hard work — is a game changer, open doors, God willing, for us to head to Putrajaya, can or not?” he said in the speech which was uploaded on his official account on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

PAS president Tan Sri Abdul Hadi Awang also took to X to thank all voters for the huge victory by PAS in the Kemaman seat, and also congratulated the election machinery who had worked hard to ensure victory for PAS and the coalition Perikatan Nasional which it belongs to.

Hadi claimed that the increased vote majority for PAS was a clear “signal” of the public’s rejection towards the unity government, adding: “To Dr Samsuri, a bigger responsibility awaits.”

Previously during the 15th general election on November 19 last year, Terengganu PAS committee member Che Alias Hamid had won the Kemaman seat in a four-corner fight with 65,714 votes, which gave him a 27,179 vote-majority over BN candidate and Terengganu Umno chief Datuk Seri Ahmad Said. Ahmad had won 38,535 votes, while Pakatan Harapan had won 8,340 votes and Parti Pejuang Tanah Air had won 506 votes.

But on September 26 this year, the Election Court decided to nullify Che Alias’s election win following an election petition, with the election judge accepting the allegation that there had been bribery in several official events of the Terengganu state government through the distribution of i-Belia and i-Siswa aid funds to voters during the GE15 campaign period to garner votes for Che Alias.

PAS later decided not to appeal the Election Court’s decision, which led to today’s by-election.