GEORGE TOWN: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) is certain it will not relinquish any of its seats in Penang to DAP to allow the party to field Malay candidates this upcoming general election.
State PKR chief Datuk Mansor Othman said DAP as a multi--racial party could pick from any of its 19 state seats if it wanted to place its chosen Malay candidates.
"From PKR's point of view, we are not going to entertain that kind of request," he told reporters after addressing more than 300 PKR members at the State PKR 13th general election Convention yesterday.
Mansor said only the Penang Malay Congress (PMC), through its president, Rahmad Isahak, had been "fussing" about the need to field more Malay DAP candidates to represent the 640,000 Malays in the state.
He said PKR would contest the same 16 seats it did in 2008, of which it won nine.
Asked about the tussle between PAS and PKR over Sungai Acheh seat currently held by PKR, Mansor said the matter is still being discussed at the central party level.
He said bilateral negotiations regarding seat allocations between PKR and DAP, and PKR and PAS, has been completed but currently tri--partite negotiations on the state are still ongoing between all three Pakatan Rakyat's component parties nationally.
"We will leave the Sungai Acheh issue for the central leadership to discuss. The conclusion on the statelevel is both (PKR and PAS) want that seat," he said.
On whether Mansor would be contesting Nibong Tebal federal seat, he replied: "I am a party man. We will let the party decide."
The Penanti assemblyman, who is also Deputy Chief Minister (I), hinted that only top party leaders would be allowed to contest both state and federal seats, when asked if he would defend his state seat and contest Nibong Tebal.
Mansor said Barisan Nasional seemed to be eyeing Penanti looking at the way Umno has been attacking it lately.
"Last week, they had a kenduri (fete) in my place. They say they will be able to win back my seat.
"BN said they will also win Batu Maung but they must remember they did not win big the last time. All they got was under 500 votes like in Bayan Lepas, Pulau Betong, Sungai Acheh, Seberang Jaya and Sungai Dua.
"BN is the one who should be worried. Through our observation, all our areas are 'white' (winnable). We are confident of winning especially if BN does not play dirty." he said, adding that
PKR was prepared for the general election now than ever before.