By R.S.N. Murali
KUALA TERENGGANU: Four term Wakaf Mempelam assemblyman and state PAS treasurer Mohd Abdul Wahid Endot has been chosen by the party take on Barisan Nasional heavyweight Datuk Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh in the Kuala Terengganu by-election on Jan 17.
The much-awaited announcement, made last night by Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, took many by surprise as even the PAS president said there was a “last-minute change”.
Abdul Hadi, who made the announcement at the packed Stadium Negeri in Batu Burok here, said it had been difficult to choose the PAS candidate, saying: “All of the ones we had in mind were highly capable people.”
In the end, he said, he made up his mind after adhering to the “Islamic methods”.
Thousands of PAS supporters, gathered at the stadium, broke into thunderous cheers when the announcement was made.
Party stalwarts, and leaders from DAP and PKR also attended the event.
Mohd Abdul Wahid, 52, is a four-term assemblyman, Kuala Terengganu PAS chief and state PAS treasurer. He is a Fisheries and Marine Science graduate from the Universiti Putra Malaysia.
His name had not even been on political observers’ list speculating about who would be the PAS candidate to face Wan Ahmad in the by-election.
Several names had come up including Batu Burok state assemblyman Dr Syed Azman Ahmad Nawawi, who is also the former Kuala Terengganu MP. Others were state PAS commissioner Datuk Mustafa Ali and his deputy Datuk Wan Muttalib Wan Embong.
It is learnt that some 72 PAS members had been tasked with obtaining feedback from the grassroots on whom they felt was the most appropriate candidate.
Views had also been sought from non-Malay voters.
The death of incumbent Datuk Razali Ismail of Barisan triggered the by-election.