MELAKA: The public should place their trust in Barisan Nasional’s candidates who have progressive mindsets and positive track records, says MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.

Citing the candidates contesting here – MCA vice-president Datuk Lim Ban Hong (Tangga Batu), Umno information chief Shahril Hamdan (Alor Gajah) and MCA’s Kon Qi Yao (Kota Melaka) – he said they should be given an opportunity to lead their constituencies.

They are bright individuals who could raise many issues in Parliament such as matters related to youths, employment and business opportunities, he told reporters after visiting the Tangga Batu night market yesterday.

Dr Wee said thorough discussions were held on which parties would contest in Tangga Batu and Alor Gajah.

“Lim has been in the Tangga Batu area for the longest time and would be the best candidate to win the seat,” he said.

He also that it would also be a waste if Shahril did not contest in the 15th General Election.

“The seat he is contesting is full of challenges where he is up against a heavyweights there.

“But he has the criteria and it is not easy to find a leader who is fluent in both English and Malay, while also having a progressive mindset.

“Hence, we need dynamic leaders like Shahril,” he said.

Dr Wee stressed that such talents should be highlighted to make Malaysia a world class country, as these individuals would one day lead the country.

Shahril, meanwhile, said he had received full support from the Barisan machinery in Alor Gajah.

“Despite the seat traditionally being contested by MCA, the Barisan family has come forward to show their support.

“This reflects that the interests of Barisan as a whole are more important than personal interest or tradition,” he said, adding that Tangga Batu was also traditionally contested by Umno.

He acknowledged that a mounting challenge awaited him in Alor Gajah, given how he is going up against former Melaka chief minister Adly Zahari from Pakatan Harapan and Perikatan Nasional’s Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof who is a former federal minister.

“As the Umno deputy youth chief, I cannot expect to contest in easy seats, and for GE15, I am going against two giants.

“My opponents have also had opportunities to serve Alor Gajah as a former chief minister and MP respectively, hence the voters can weigh whether things have improved under them,” he said.