KUALA LUMPUR, April 2 — Blogger Datuk Mohd Ariff Sabri Abdul Aziz, better known as Sakmongkol AK47, was named as the DAP’s candidate for Raub in Pahang last night, reflecting the predominantly Chinese party’s push for a multi-racial slate.
DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng announced the one-term Pulau Manis assemblyman’s name for the Malay-majority federal seat, now held by MCA vice-president and Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen.
The former Pekan Umno information chief has been a trenchant critic of the Barisan Nasional (BN) government after just one term as assemblyman between 2004 and 2008.
He has been active on the ceramah circuit after joining the DAP a few months ago and was always a popular name for the Raub seat where Ng won the semi-urban constituency with a 2,752-vote majority in Election 2008.
The narrow margin has made Raub one of the seats opposition bloc Pakatan Rakyat (PR) believes it can wrest along with 11 other parliamentary seats identified as fallible by DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang.
Lim also announced Tengku Zulpuri Shah Raja Puji, a member of the Pahang royal house, as the DAP’s candidate for the Mentakab state seat.
Tengku Zulpuri had joined the DAP in 2000. An electronics engineer by training and currently a businessman, he was later made a member of the Selayang Municipal Council.
The MCA’s Chuah Boon Siong had beaten the DAP in the Malay-majority seat with a 2,439-vote majority in Election 2008.
The DAP was forced to counter allegations of Chinese chauvinism when an initial results of its party polls saw no Malays elected to the party’s central executive committee (CEC).
The party later appointed Senator Ariffin S.M. Omar and Zairil Khir Johari into the CEC but a recount of its results following a “glitch” to the tabulation of the polls outcome purportedly showed the latter had won enough votes to make it to the last spot in the committee.
Rivals have used the botched results to brand the party’s elections as a sham.
The DAP leadership has denied the allegations, saying the mishap was “an honest mistake” caused by “human error”.
The controversy has prompted an investigation by the Registrar of Societies (RoS).