Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Permatang Pauh: Aftermath 3 .. Anwar wins big victory in Malaysia by-election

10.35 pm
latest: Final EC tally - Anwar got 31,195 votes, Arif Shah, 15,524, Hanafi, 92. Anwar won with a majority of 15,671. Anwar's wife, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, won the seat with a 13,388 majority at the March 8 general election. ...

PERMATANG PAUH, Malaysia (Reuters) - Anwar Ibrahim scored a big victory in a key Malaysian by-election on Tuesday, a leading news portal said, enabling the country's best known opposition politician to challenge for power.

Anwar, whose campaign to win the seat vacated by his wife has been dogged by new charges of sodomy, has said he will start talks with MPs from the governing Barisan Nasional coalition to initiate a confidence vote to topple the government.

Influential news portal Malaysiakini (www.malaysiakini.com) reported that Anwar had won by 16,210 votes over his challenger from Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi's United Malays National Organisation (UMNO).

Anwar's party had already claimed he was "far ahead".

Political analysts had said he needed to win by at least the 13,388 vote margin his wife achieved when she contested the seat in March's general election. The official result is due at around 9 p.m. (2 p.m. EDT).

Victory had been widely predicted for the man who was once deputy prime minister and seemed destined to become UMNO leader and prime minister.

Anwar's meteoric rise to power ended abruptly when he was imprisoned in the late 1990s on what he says were trumped up sodomy and corruption charges.

Anwar denies the new sodomy charges made by a 23-year old male aide and says if he wins power he will sweep away economic and social privileges for ethnic Malays in education and the civil service, policies he endorsed when in power. Continued...

click here: Anwar wins big victory in Malaysia by-election
Reuters UK, UK - 6 minutes ago

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The Associated Press
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The Standard, Hong Kong
Website says Anwar wins Malaysia vote with big majority
Reuters UK, UK
Malaysia's Anwar wins by landslide in election
Bangkok Post, Thailand