Polls close in tightly fought Malaysian election

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Polls close in tightly fought Malaysian election

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The polls have closed in Malaysia and the counting begun.

The general election has been the most closely fought in the country’s history with the possibility that voters could put an end to a run of 56 years in power for the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition.

Despite trying to win over a growing middle class with social reforms, Prime Minister Najib Razak has come up against a momentum for change especially among young Malaysians.

The three-party Pakatan Rakyat opposition alliance led by Anwar Ibrahim has pledged to clean up politics – it wants to break down a network of race-based patronage that has grown up over the past few decades.

As the polls closed there were tales of suspected fraud allegedly carried out by the ruling coalition. Witnesses claimed that indelible ink could be easily washed off enabling some to cast ballots twice.

Results electing the 222 seat parliament will begin to trickle in over the next few hours.