Oct 13 polling for Port Dickson by-election

By BERNAMA / Pic By TMR File

PUTRAJAYA • The Election Commission (EC) has set Oct 13 for polling in the Port Dickson parliamentary by-election.

The nomination is on Sept 29 and early voting on Oct 9, EC deputy chairman Tan Sri Othman Mahmood said yesterday.

The campaign period for the by-election is 14 days, he said at a press conference after the EC held a special meeting to determine the dates at its headquarters.

Othman said it would cost the EC RM3.6 million to conduct the by-election, and added that the parliamentary constituency is large with five state constituencies within it.

He said the EC anticipated that 70% of the 75,700 voters in the constituency would turn up to cast their ballots.

The by-election has been necessitated by the resignation of the MP Datuk Danyal Balagopal Abdullah, 68, of PKR, to enable PKR president-elect Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (picture) to contest the seat and become an MP.

In the 14th General Election on May 9, Danyal Balagopal secured a majority of 17,710 votes and beat Datuk VS Mogan of BN and Mahfuz Roslan of PAS. This is the fourth by-election since GE14.

Three by-elections were held previously, for the Sungai Kandis, Seri Setia and Balakong state seats, all in Selangor.

The state by-elections were held following the deaths of the assemblymen. Othman said applications for postal voting could be submitted from today to Sept 29.

He also said the EC would use the Port Dickson Municipal Council hall as the nomination centre and vote-tallying centre.

There would be 39 polling stations with 171 polling streams, up from the 145 streams for GE14.

The EC had appointed Khairy Maamor as the returning officer, and he would have nine assistants, he said, adding that 1,403 election workers had been appointed to conduct the by-election.

“The EC is setting up five election campaign enforcement squads to monitor all election activities during the official campaign period,” he said.

Othman also said the EC would provide two special polling streams for voters aged 60 and above at the polling stations, increase the number of streams at stations with a large number of voters, and extend the period of polling by 30 minutes to make it from 8am to 5.30pm.

“Another improvement is increasing the number of polling booths from two to three,” he said. Othman said the electoral rolls updated as of Sept 11, 2018, would be used for the by-election. The rolls comprise 75,770 voters, made up of 68,486 ordinary voters, 7,268 early voters and 16 absentee voters.

Othman said the EC would hold a “Jom Kita Undi” (Let’s Vote) campaign through various channels including the electronic media, social media, print media and banners at strategic locations to encourage the voters to come out and vote.

The EC also invited non-governmental organisations and other interested bodies to observe the conduct of the by-election from nomination day to the announcement of the result, he said.