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Sunday, May 31, 2020

NAJIB GOING ALL OUT TO ENSURE HIS SON WINS CHINI BY-ELECTIONS? EC TO CONDUCT CHINI POLLS WITH SPECIAL PANDEMIC GUIDELINES – WHILE UMNO, WHICH IS EXPECTED TO FIELD NIZAR NAJIB, STARTS AGITATING FOR A WALKOVER VIA LAWYERS GROUP

The Election Commission (EC) regards the Chini state by-election, to be held on July 4, to serve as a benchmark for it to hold other by-elections as well as general election during a pandemic situation in the country.
Its chairperson Azhar Azizan Harun said the commission was preparing the standard operating procedure (SOP) for the Chini by-election to protect the health and safety of all parties, including voters.
“The Chini by-election will be conducted using the new SOP. In the event there are other elections to be held in future and the Covid-19 pandemic is still not over, the SOP will be applicable,” he said in an exclusive interview with Bernama TV in his office in Putrajaya recently.
Azhar said the SOP would be improved from time to time depending on the situation and circumstances then.
“We have discussed twice with them (MOH, MKN, Nadma, PDRM) on May 8 and 21 on this special SOP but it has yet to be finalised and it is subjected to the government’s directive on the Covid-19 pandemic in the country,” he said.
He said the EC’s approach to the Chini election is based on one of the main goals of ensuring the safety and health of voters, taking into account the risk of the Covid-19 infection.
RELATED STORY: Najib’s son in running for Chini by-election
The SOP on the Chini by-election is aimed at reducing the risk of Covid-19 infection among voters, as well as candidates, supporters and election workers, he added.
On whether the election workers for the Chini by-election would be required to go for the Covid-19 swab test, Azhar said it would not be made compulsory, but they would be required to take their body temperature, clean their hands with sanitiser and maintain their social distancing when at the nomination centre and the vote-counting centre.
The EC has set the nomination for the Chini state by-election on June 20, with early voting on June 30 and polling on July 4.
The by-election is being called after the incumbent, Abu Bakar Harun, died of a heart attack at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital on May 6.
In the 14th general election (GE14) in May 2018, Abu Bakar polled 10,027 votes to win the seat by a majority of 4,622 votes against PAS candidate Mohd Fadhil Noor Abdul Karim who obtained 5,405 votes and Mohamad Razali Ithnain of PKR (1,065 votes).
The by-election is the first-ever called during the movement control order period. – Bernama

Lawyers group wants an Umno walkover in Chini

The Felda Generation Malaysia Legal Practitioners’ Association (PPUGFM) has urged the opposition to give Umno a walkover for the Chini by-election.
PPUGFM president Mohd Rosidi Hassan (above) said saving lives was more important than other needs in view of the Covid-19 outbreak.
“In view of this, we urge (the opposition) not to cause a contest during the Chini by-election.
“Let Chini continue to be represented by Umno until the term (of the Pahang State Legislative Assembly) expires,” Rosidi said in a statement today.
“If we consider that Muafakat Nasional now exists, it is clear who will be choice of the Chini voters,” he said.
The late Abu Bakar Harun retained the Chini seat with an impressive 60 percent of the votes cast, with PAS candidate Mohd Fadhil Noor Abdul Karim coming in at a distant second (32 percent) followed by Bersatu’s Mohamad Razali Ithnain (6.5 percent), who failed to retain his deposit.
So far, no opposition party has declared that it will vie for the Chini state seat, which is located under the Pekan parliamentary constituency – the stronghold of former prime minister and former Umno president Najib Abdul Razak.
Rosidi said that PPUGFM’s position was not against the principles of democracy.
“Should the Election Commission have another way of conducting the election, such as having it online, then we will support the polls to be held.
“However, for now, it is better there is no election, to avoid a disaster (due to the possible spread of Covid-19),” he said.
The Chini by-election, called after the death of Abu Bakar on May 6, is slated to be held on July 4, with June 20 fixed as the nomination date, while early voting will be on June 30. MKINI
BERNAMA / MKINI

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