Court dismisses EC’s preliminary objection against Sungai Udang election petition

By BERNAMA

MELAKA, Feb 11  — The Election Court here today dismissed the preliminary objections by Election Commission (EC) and two others against an election petition filed by Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate for the Sungai Udang seat, Datuk Seri Mohamad Ali Mohamad, who lost in the recent Melaka state election.

The two others were Dr Mohd Aleef Yusof of Perikatan Nasional (PN) and the returning officer for Sungai Udang during the election held on Nov 20 last year.

Judge Datuk Azman Abdullah made the decision on grounds that the case should be heard as it is of public interest.

Lawyer Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun, representing Mohamad Ali, told reporters that the court had fixed March 24 to April 31 to hear the election petition.

Over 30 witnesses will be called to testify in the trial, he said.

On Dec 14, Mohamad Ali, 57, filed an election petition to annul the victory of Dr Mohd Aleef, 35, alleging that there were elements of corruption involved in the election for the Sungai Udang seat.

He named Dr Mohd Aleef, who won with a majority of 530 votes in the four-cornered fight, the returning officer for the state seat during the election, and the EC as the first to third respondents.

In his petition, Mohamad Ali, who is Tangga Batu UMNO division head, requested to nullify Dr Mohd Aleef’s victory and sought a by-election for the seat.

Mohamad Ali claimed that Dr Mohd Aleef had committed corrupt practices in the election as stated under Section 32 (c) of the Election Offences Act 1954.

The three respondents then filed preliminary objections to the election petition.