Independent candidate KJ John is optimistic about his chances of winning the massive seat of Petaling Jaya, even though he faces a six-way battle for support including with candidates from the country's biggest political coalitions.
John, a former member of Amanah, said he decided to run in the PKR stronghold after losing faith in the struggle of Pakatan Harapan (PH) as well as all the rest of the political parties.
He said standing as an independent candidate would give him the edge in the sense that he was not bound by the instructions of any party leader.
Speaking to MalaysiaNow, he said this would make it easier for him to speak on behalf of the people if he wins the seat in the upcoming election.
PH retained the Petaling Jaya seat in the 2018 general election through Maria Chin Abdullah, who contested on a PKR ticket.
She was replaced in the 15th general election with Lee Chean Chung, the assemblyman for Semambu in Pahang since 2013.
John, however, does not see Petaling Jaya as a PKR fortress as he attributes the massive 50,000 majority received by the party at the 14th general election to Maria's status as an activist.
"From what I have seen throughout the campaign period, sentiments are quite good," he said.
"There are those who support me, and they are happy when I say that I do not represent any political party."
John, who holds a PhD from the George Washington University in the US, decided to leave Amanah in December last year after concluding that the party was too quiet in PH.
"They would not have fielded me as a candidate for Amanah because PH's stand is that Petaling Jaya is a PKR seat," he said.
"How can they say that? If Parliament has been dissolved, then this seat belongs to the people of Malaysia. Anyone can contest."