Zaid goes to court

>> Monday, May 24, 2010

Defeated PKR candidate Datuk Zaid Ibrahim is seeking a court order to declare the Hulu Selangor by-election null and void on grounds of alleged bribery and corrupt practices.

He wants the court to declare if such conduct is permitted during an election.

If the court declared that there were elements of bribery, than fresh polls should be called, he said.

In a petition filed at the Shah Alam High Court at 11am Monday, Zaid also sought a declaration that P. Kamalanathan was not duly elected as the Hulu Selangor MP.

In the by-election held on April 25, Kamalanathan of Barisan Nasional defeated Zaid of PKR by a 1,725 - vote majority.

“I am not doing this for personal reasons. I am doing this in the interest of all the political parties. Certain legal issues need to be clarified before the next general elections.“We have observed unhealthy trends in the Hulu Selangor and Sibu by-elections,” Zaid said.

Zaid cited four examples of alleged unhealthy practices during the Hulu Selangor by-election.

Points raised include a RM3mil allocation for SJKC Rasa, promises to pay RM160,000 per acre each to former settlers of Felda Sungai Buaya on condition that Selangor is returned to Barisan in the next general election, payment of RM50,000 each to the former settlers or their next of kin, and promising RM300,000 for SRJKC Kalumpang.

Zaid filed the petition citing section 32(a) and 32 (c) of the Election Offences Act 1954.

Section 32 (a) states that if general bribery, general treating or general intimidation had so extensively prevailed that they might be reasonably supposed to have affected the result of the election.

Section 32(c) refers to a corrupt practice or illegal practice committed in connection with the election by the candidate or with his knowledge or consent, or by any agent of the candidate.

Zaid also named returning officer Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan and the Election Commission in the petition.

Zaid is represented by a team of six lawyers namely Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, Azhar Azizan Harun, Gobind Singh Deo, Ang Hean Leng, Leong Sher-How and G. Sreekant.

Azhar said the election petition must be disposed within six months from the filing date.


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