Tuesday, 3 February 2009

EC: No by-elections in Perak - Malaysiakini

The Election Commission (EC) announced that by-elections are not necessary for the Perak state seats of Changkat Jering and Behrang.

EC Chairman Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof said this is because there are doubts over the purported resignation letters from the two state representatives, Malaysiakini reports.

The Election Commission today announced that by-elections are not necessary for the state seats of Changkat Jering and Behrang as there are doubts over the resignation letters said to have been submitted by the elected representatives.

EC said it received the resignations letters - dated Jan 30 - from Perak speaker V Sivakumar yesterday.

On the same day, the commission also received letters from the two state representatives disputing the claim that they had resigned.

"There exist doubts over the validity of the resignation letters submitted by the Perak state assembly speaker given the fact that the incumbents for both state constituencies had, with total realisation, submitted letters to discount both the submitted resignation letters as invalid.

"As such, EC decided that it cannot establish that vacancies have occurred.

"Thus it will not be able to call by-elections. The two seats are still held by the two state representatives," EC chairperson Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof told a packed press conference at the commission's headquarters in Putrajaya at 1pm.

The press conference was held after the EC held an emergency meeting to discuss the controversy.

"By this, the EC has decided that it does not have the power to invoke Article 36(5) of the constitution of the state of Perak to establish that there are casual vacancies for both the constituencies.

"Therefore,we have decided that both the seats will remain (those of) the incumbents, who had won them (legally) in the last general election," he added.

The controversy over the status of Jamaluddin Mat Radzi (Behrang) and Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering) started when they went missing from Jan 26 amidst strong speculation that they would be defecting to Barisan Nasional (read here).

Sivakumar then announced that he had received resignation letters from the duo on Feb 1 and declared the two seats vacant.

The next day he submitted an official letter to the Perak EC, informing it of the vacancies so that by-elections could be called within 60 days.

After Sivakumar's announcement on Feb 1, the ‘missing' Jamaluddin spoke to the media to challenge the validity of his resignation letter.

Yesterday both Jamaluddin and Osman released statements challenging the resignation letters used by Sivakumar to declare their seats vacant.

They insisted that they have not resigned and are still the elected representatives for their seats.

And in a later development in the evening, Jamaluddin was quoted in several media reports that he was no longer a PKR member.

He was reported as saying that he was "thrown out" of PKR by party leaders and that he has now become an independent state assemblyperson.

"By submitting my resignation letter to the Perak speaker, the party has indicated that it does not want me," he was quoted as saying in Utusan Online.

Related article: small talk's entry YB Signing undated letter of resignations?

1 comment:

Lee said...

That there will be no by elections in Changat Jering and Behrang is a forgone conclusion.This is so because
the Constitution allows our elected representatives to hop from one party to another, not withstanding the fact that they might have all signed so-called letters of resignation, albeit undated.If the situation warrants, the elected representatives can always write another letter to say that they have not resigned!Anyway,the two elected representatives concerned have lost all credibility to serve their constituents.They should not be hiding from their constituents, but should come out openly to face them, to declare their stand and why they are letting them down, and to obtain their support.If they dared not face their constituents, how can they served?