Rendang pledge and raja bomoh's no-show

Talk show host Azwan Ali is in a five-way contest in the Selangor state seat of Bukit Antarabangsa, where he faces his brother, Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali. He pledged yesterday to cook chicken rendang for residents if he won the seat.
Talk show host Azwan Ali is in a five-way contest in the Selangor state seat of Bukit Antarabangsa, where he faces his brother, Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali. He pledged yesterday to cook chicken rendang for residents if he won the seat.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

Candidates in past elections have promised to build playgrounds, get rid of mosquitoes, and fix water and housing woes. But flamboyant talk show host Azwan Ali yesterday pledged to cook chicken rendang for residents if he won the Selangor state assembly seat of Bukit Antarabangsa, where he is in a five-way race that includes his brother, Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali.

Mr Azwan, who had previously threatened to reveal secrets about his brother and claimed to have details of graft allegations against him, told The Sunday Times he would try his best to fulfil broken promises made by past leaders.

He is running as an independent, and chose the logo of an elephant "because it is big and strong".

Mr Azmin, deputy president of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), is defending his Gombak parliamentary seat for a third term.

He declined to comment on his brother's chances, saying: "We are a democratic country... If you want to contest, I will not stop you. Let the rakyat (people) decide."

Mr Ibrahim Mat Zin, who goes by the moniker "raja bomoh" or shaman king, and is best known for holding two coconuts while standing in sea water to save Malaysia from a North Korean nuclear strike, did not show up to register.

He had said that he wanted to contest in Bagan Datuk, Perak. The incumbent MP for the seat, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, told reporters after nominations closed: "Ibrahim Mat Zin… is a bankrupt, so he is not qualified to submit his nomination.

"I actually welcomed him to contest. The more the merrier. We waited for him today… but he disqualified himself."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on April 29, 2018, with the headline 'Rendang pledge and raja bomoh's no-show'. Print Edition | Subscribe