Wednesday, October 7, 2009

PAS may seek to postpone Bagan Pinang by-election

PORT DICKSON: PAS may seek an injunction to postpone the by-election in Bagan Pinang on Sunday if it does not receive a favourable response from the Election Commission (EC) on cleaning up the names of voters on the electoral roll.

PAS Bagan Pinang by-election director Salahuddin Ayub said today the party would decide on the appropriate action after a meeting with EC chairman at Putrajaya.

"The names of these 'double voters' have been in existence for many years. We estimate there are about two million names nationwide but no action has been taken by the EC," Salahuddin told reporters at the PAS command centre.

Asked why the party had waited so long to take legal action, the Kubang Kerian MP said it was the right time now as it also involved the voters.

"It’s very relevant because it also involves the voters in Bagan Pinang," he said.

PAS vice-president Datuk Mahfuz Omar cited a report from Bernama which quoted the president of ex-servicemen’s association, Datuk Muhammad Abdul Ghani, who urged retired servicemen to change their voting status from postal to ordinary voters.

Muhammad also urged retired servicemen to return to Bagan Pinang and vote on Sunday.

Mahfuz questioned whether the retired servicemen will return to vote "or will somebody vote on their behalf?"

PAS has been questioning the transparency of postal votes, which account for 4,604 of the 13,664 voters in Bagan Pinang.

Last week, PAS secretary general Datuk Mustafa Ali said there were only 1,200 servicemen registered as postal voters in the Bagan Pinang constituency.

PKR election director Saifuddin Nasution, who was present, said the party will send an invitation to Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to attend a forum with party adviser and Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Saifuddin said the forum would be an outlet to explain to the public"who the Malay traitor really is".

"This will let allow parties to explain themselves. We hope Muhyiddin will not continue to attack Anwar and call him a Malay traitor," Saifuddin said.

In August, Muhyiddin reportedly callled Anwar a traitor and refused to apologise to Anwar.

Anwar had demanded an apology and a retraction of the statement, reportedly made at opening of the Sri Gading Umno division meeting.

He also made a similar demand to Utusan Malaysia, which reported the statement and demanded RM100 million from both parties in damages caused by the statement.

Saifuddin also said he welcomed Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin to lodge a police report against Anwar on allegations that Anwar had RM3 billion in several master accounts.

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