Uthayakumar to stay out of Hulu Selangor

By Baradan Kuppusamy (Malaysian Insider)
KUALA LUMPUR, March 29 – The yet-to-be-registered Human Rights Party has decided not to contest the upcoming Hulu Selangor by-election, its founder and pro-tem secretary general P. Uthayakumar said today.
He said in a statement that the party will also not support either the Barisan Nasional (BN) or the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalitions.
The decision is likely to be a boost for PR because a HRP candidate may have drawn young Hindraf supporters away from the federal opposition.
Uthayakumar gave various reasons for not contesting but the real reason, party sources said, is that HRP is not prepared, lacks finances and has no machinery to mobilise support.
Another reason is that the anti-Umno party sees Hulu Selangor as a “lost cause” because it is a Malay majority seat.
The fear of losing badly in the contest also weighed heavily on the HRP leaders.
“The negative implications of defeat would colour the HRP in the run-up to the next general elections,” a HRP leader said
He said that Hulu Selangor was also not one of the seats targeted by HRP unlike Batu Kawan in Penang which is now held by DAP’s Dr P. Ramasamy.
Dr Ramasamy, who has been attacking HRP and Uthayakumar, is seen as an “enemy” by HRP for questioning the fate of millions of ringgits that were donated by the public when the five Hindraf leaders were in ISA detention.
Ramasamy has also been sued for raising the issue.
In contrast Datuk G. Palanivel, the MIC deputy president and former incumbent is seen as “friendly” by the former Hindraf leaders.
“The Central Committee of HRP after due deliberation based on its analysis of the situation has made the decision (not to contest) which is guided by the principle of true representation for the Indian poor and not by any considerations of expediency or personal gain,” Uthayakumar said.
“Both the PR and the BN government have yet to clearly show in their policies any real consideration for the problems of the Indian poor. We consider therefore that neither of them makes a difference to the lives of the Indian poor,” he said.
HRP’s objective is to change all of that, so there will be more political will in the system to positively address these issues, he said.
“We believe this is possible only when there is increased true representation for the Indian poor,” he said adding if they contest HRP would only mean delivering “advantage to PR or BN in default.”
“We do not want to give any advantage to either coalition as they do not deserve it,” he added.
He also said HRP does not need to test its strength by contesting.
“We know our strength from the groundswell of inputs we are getting from our supporters and well wishers across the country,” he said.
“We are a rising force on the Malaysian political landscape. We are not in a hurry.”
“What the Indian poor require is more real representation and not dog and pony shows,” he said adding HRP will continue to focus on its political empowerment strategy for Indians to capture 15 Parliament seats and 38 State seats in the next, 13th general election.
“In this by-election in Hulu Selangor therefore, our stand is that we will not contest in the elections. We will neither endorse anyone who contests in this election. We will remain completely neutral. We will let the people of Hulu Selangor decide for themselves who they prefer among the lesser of the choices.” he said.
“We are very clear about all of that,” he added.