PORT DICKSON, Oct 13 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim gave the entirety of his glory from winning the Port Dickson by-election to the Pakatan Harapan pact, saying tonight’s result was clear of the people’s faith in the new ruling coalition.
Despite his massive personal victory — surpassing his predecessor’s majority despite a lower turnout and cornering 71 per cent of the popular vote — the PKR president-elect credited the pact’s leadership and campaign efforts with tonight’s outcome.
He categorised the margin as the people’s vote of confidence in the federal administration, which Anwar is now set to take over once Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad steps down.
Expressing gratitude to PD voters for their enthusiastic support, Anwar said he was extremely pleased and humbled by the by-election results.
“The result is more convincing than what was observed in last general election.
“What is astounding to me is that we have managed to garner favourable support from all ethnic group,” he said.
With Parliament set to resume on Monday, Anwar said he expected to be sworn in then and make an immediate return to law-making.
He said he planned to support PH leaders such as DAP’s Lim Kit Siang in pursuing parliamentary reforms.
“This has been reiterated by the prime minister himself,” he said during a press conference at the PH operations centre following the official announcement of the results.
Anwar said Dr Mahathir was pleased with tonight’s result when he called to inform the PH chairman of his victory.
Also present were outgoing PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
In the by-election for the Port Dickson federal seat, Anwar won with a majority of 23,560 votes when he polled 31,016 ballots against his closest contender, PAS candidate Lt Col (Rtd) Mohd Nazari Mokhtar, who took 7,456 votes.
Fomer Negri Sembilan mentri besar Tan Sri Isa Samad, previously thought to be Anwar’s strongest challenger, was a distant third with 4,230 votes.
The 58.3 per cent voter turnout figure is the highest in the by-elections since the 14th general election, but far below the 83.6 per cent from May 9.
Isa and the four other independents who contested all lost their deposits.