AFTER WINNING a 57-seat majority in the national 222-member parliament in the Malaysian elections at the weekend, one would expect the Barisan National Alliance to be celebrating its return to power. Not so: members of the Alliance have been stunned by the result, and many have called for the resignation of the incumbent Prime Minister, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.
Despite its re-election, the stocks of the Alliance have deteriorated dramatically. In the previous parliament, the Alliance had a 177-seat majority; it also controlled 12 of Malaysia’s 13 states, but, in state elections held at the same time as the national ones, the Alliance was thrown out of power in four more states.
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