The Tanjung Piai parliamentary seat is vacant upon the death of Datuk Dr Mohamed Farid Md Rafik.
The by-election for the constituency seat will be the ninth by-election in Malaysia after GE-14.
According to the social network analysis of ‘Tanjung Piai’ on Twitter from 26 September to 24 October 2019, the overall network can be separated into four significant clusters – purple, green, orange and pink clusters.
The centre of the network focused on the hashtag ‘#prktanjungpiai’. It was used to reference the upcoming PRK (pilihan raya kecil) or the by-election for Tanjung Piai.
The hashtag was heavily used by media accounts such as @501Awani, @staronline and @bernamadotcom.
One of the issues raised during this timeframe was the RM7 million government allocation to develop Tanjung Piai amidst the by-election.
Bersatu chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was alleged to be using the allocation as ‘voting bait’ for the Tanjung Piai by-election, which his party is contesting in.
However, Tun Mahathir denied the speculation. @bernamaradio made a tweet on Mahathir’s clarification, which was later retweeted by @Jpenerangan.
@Jpenerangan also boosted a tweet from @bernamadotcom. It was regarding the news that six candidacy forms for the upcoming Tanjung Piai by-election have been sold.
Meanwhile, the green cluster had @umnoonline as its influencer. The account tweeted that UMNO Johor will maintain Barisan Nasional’s (BN) momentum by winning the Tanjung Piai by-election.
It was revealed that BN will appointing an MCA candidate to contest for the parliamentary seat.
Confirmed candidates for the by-election are Bersatu’s Karmaine Sardini and Gerakan’s Wendy Subramaniam.
It was reported that Putra, a newly formed party by former UMNO veteran Datuk Ibrahim Ali, will be contesting for the seat if UMNO is not participating in the by-election.
The nomination day for Tanjung Piai by-election was set to commence on November 2, while the election day will be on November 16.