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PARTY ACTIVISTS AND PARTY PROGRAMS AT GRASSROOTS LEVEL: THE INTERTWINED EFFECT
Corresponding Author(s) : Wan Rohila Ganti Wan Abdul Ghapar
Humanities & Social Sciences Reviews,
Vol. 8 No. 3 (2020): May
Purpose of the study: This study explored how party activists retain their high activism with the party through their involvement with party activities. It also attempted to explore party programs at the grassroots level that helps maintain continuous grassroots support for the party. The strong symbiosis between party activists and party programs at the grassroots level was a secret formula to win elections.
Methodology: Being qualitative in nature, this study conducted in-depth interviews with thirty - two party activists. The PAS and UMNO party activists in Terengganu were selected as units of analysis using the purposive sampling technique. The interview data were thematically analysed through the content analysis method.
Main Findings: This study yielded that Community and Welfare programs, and Electoral Works were two impactful party programs to fish votes and maintain voters’ support at the grassroots level. On party efforts to maintain the motivation of its activists, this study found four main party programs namely internal programs, political training, involvement outside party, and joining special programs.
Applications of this study: This study concludes that ensuring party activists at their highest level of motivation by designing various programs are equally important with organizing party programs with the voters at local levels. When party activists are highly motivated, party programs at local levels would be successfully run, while organizing party programs at the local level without the presence of highly motivated party activists would be worthless.
Novelty/Originality of this study: Party activists are often neglected by party leaders, as much focus has been given to party manifesto, choosing winnable candidates, and encountering electoral issues. Neglecting party activists often leads to frustration, thus party programs cannot be properly organized without committed party activists.
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