The Semenyih by-election is now in the midst of their campaigning period which kick-started recently on February 16. The by-election will witness a four-cornered fight featuring Aiman Zainali for Pakatan Harapan (PH); Zakaria Hanafi for Barisan Nasional (BN); Nik Aziz Afiq Abdul from Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) and Kuan Chee Heng @ Uncle Kentang who will be standing as an independent candidate.
Despite a four-cornered fight, 2 names became the centre of attention when it comes to Semenyih by-election which are PH’s candidate Aiman Zainali whom is the son-in-law of late assemblyman Bakhtiar Mohd Nor and BN’s candidate Zakaria Hanafi who is the former UMNO Hulu Langat chief and a local.
The hot issue surrounding the by-election is the swinging PAS direction. Initially, PAS supported UMNO after their successful partnership in Cameron Highlands. Later, PAS president Abdul Hadi Aawang said that the party will no longer support UMNO. But, the party secretary-general Takiyudin Hassan said otherwise.
Today, Semenyih is its 7th day of campaign. Campaigning period last for 14 days.
When we look at the media share on Semenyih’s by election in the first half of the campaigning period – 16 to 22 February 2019 – we can see that non-mainstream portal, Malaysia Gazette takes the first spot with 79 news. Meanwhile, UMNO’s mouthpiece Utusan appears less active, ranking at number 4.
In comparison, Utusan ranks the first in covering the Cameron Highlands by-election during the first half of the campaigning period from 12 to 18 January 2019 with 133 news. Additionally, after the by-election ended, Utusan remained the highest with 253 news.
Considering BN is contending in the Semenyih by-election and how the media is active in talking about BN and PPBM in the context of the by-election, Utusan’s giving less coverage on Semenyih triggers curiosity.
Is there anything that causes Utusan to be comparatively quiet in Semenyih today?