Suara Keadilan Online
The 52-year old Wahid is a stalwart – almost a fixture in the Terengganu political scene – having successfully defended his state seat since 1990. His good result in the March 2008 poll may well have been the deciding factor.
PAS has named Abdul Wahid Endut, the state assemblyman for Wakaf Mempelam, as the Pakatan Rakyat candidate for the Kuala Terengganu parliamentary by-election.
Wahid, a popular but low-profile ‘local’ considered a rank outsider in comparison to his better-known colleagues, was chosen over Batu Burok assemblyman Syed Azman Syed Ahmad Nawawi and PAS state deputy commissioner Wan Mutalib Embong.
His selection was announced by party president Abdul Hadi Awang, in a move that has been closely awaited by the press and political pundits.
The news may surprise some, but Hadi has been extremely careful to play his cards close to his chest.
Fighting against a slew of election goodies
Pundits say the choice of candidate and party strategy is paramount in this crucial contest, where arch enemy Umno has thrown out a slew of election goodies and lures worth billions of ringgit in a bid to win favour with the KT voters.
“We have gone through a rigorous selection process and we are confident that our candidate met all the qualities that the people wanted,” Hadi told a large crowd at the State Stadium late tonight.
He added that the party’s revered spiritual adviser Nik Aziz Nik Mat had also endorsed Wahid’s selection..
“It was very difficult to choose the PAS candidate because all the names forwarded were good – no corruption, no money politics and no political abuse. Our candidate has the experience as a people’s representative; has never lost in the past five general elections,” Hadi said.
The 52-year old Wahid is a stalwart – almost a fixture in the Terengganu political scene – having successfully defended his state seat since 1990. He is now into his fifth term, having scored a 2,193-vote majority over his Umno rival in the March 2008 general election.
Perhaps this majority may have been the key factor for his selection, said pundits. Wahid’s result in the March poll was the best among the opposition candidates in the four state seats that make up the KT parliamentary constituency.
Syed Azman won Batu Burok by a 1,161 majority, Tengku Hassan scraped through with a 31-vote majority at Ladang, while in Bandar – the opposition candidate had lost to the MCA by 1,142 votes.
Wahid is extremely well-liked by his constituents and has spoken up on a host issues plaguing the state, including corruption, controversial mega-projects such as the Monsoon Cup and Umno’s penchant for lavish state budgets – which many KT folk fear will ultimately eat into the wealth of their future generations.
He is also Terengganu PAS treasurer and Kuala Terengganu PAS chief.
A degree-holder in marine science and fisheries, an elated Wahid promised to focus on issues rather than on ‘character bashing’ during campaigning,
The KT parliamentary seat fell vacant following the death of deputy education minister Razali Ismail who beat PAS vice president Mohamad Sabu in the March polls by just 628 votes.
Abdul Wahid Endut is Pakatan candidate for KT
Suara Keadilan Online