May 5, 2013, midnight
Malaysians went to the polls on May 5, 2013 to elect members to the House of Representatives (Dewan Rakyat). For the 13th consecutive year, Prime Minister Najib RAZAK’s ruling coalition the National Front/ Barisan National (BN) won a majority, gaining 133 out of 222 parliamentary seats. The main opposition coalition, Anwar IBRAHIM’s People’s Alliance/ Pakatan Rakyat (PR) won 89 seats.
In spite of the BN’s parliamentary victory, the party’s overall performance in the election was poorer than previous years. Under Malaysia’s first-past-the-post system, parties with a simple majority (50 % +1) of votes in a constituency, win the entire district. Malaysia has 222 single member constituencies, which translate into the same number of parliamentary seats. Thus the BN was able to win 60 percent of the 222 parliamentary seats in this election, with less than 47 percent of the popular vote. In this context, the opposition has cited several complaints about the electoral system being skewed in favor of the BN, citing various irregularities on Election Day and the early voting period. The BN has denied all allegations.