Ali Rustam eyes federal seat, confident of BN clean sweep in Malacca
KUALA LUMPUR, July 1 — Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam is ready to move on and contest a federal seat in the next general elections, saying Malacca Barisan Nasional (BN) has capable leader who can take over from him as chief minister.
The incumbent Malacca chief minister told the News Sunday Times (NST) in an interview published today that BN would make a “clean sweep” of all of the state seats in national elections due within a year as the state’s economy was booming making it tough for the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) pact to gain traction.
“Having been given the opportunity to steer Malacca to greater heights in my three-term tenure as chief minister, I am looking forward to a bigger challenge. I would love to move on to the federal government, but it all depends on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
“I have no problems moving to the federal level as one has to progress in his career. I look forward to bigger challenges,” he told the pro-establishment’s weekend edition.
“There are many capable leaders who could take over my position. In Malacca, we are not short of capable leaders. Everyone from my administration could be my successor,” he was quoted as saying.
Mohd Ali (picture) is currently the Bukit Baru state assemblyman.
BN thumped PR with a overwhelming majority in the state back in 2008, winning a whopping 23 out of the total 28 seats.
The remaining six seats are currently held by DAP leaders, including Betty Chew Gek Cheng (Kota Laksamana state assemblyman) who is the wife of Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.
“I believe we can make a clean sweep in Malacca in the next general election. For example, the Kota Laksamana assemblyman (Betty Chew) has not been serving her constituents and has made Penang her home.
“I have received many calls from voters. Many wanted local issues resolved while others were seeking the signature of their representative,” he was quoted as saying.
Mohd Ali listed down the current achievements of his administration- the state being awarded the fully developed status on October 20, 2010, being the cleanest state with the best landscaping for eight years running, and having the lowest poverty and unemployment rate.
“We have done many good things to ensure development and stability in the state. There is no reason for people not to support us.
“If people do not support us, it is their loss,” the former Umno vice-president said.