The Election Commission chairman Azhar Azizan Harun said the nomination date would be on Jan 12 and early voting would be held on Jan 22. Pic by NSTP/AHMAD IRHAM MOHD NOOR

PUTRAJAYA: The Election Commission (EC) has fixed Jan 26 next year to hold the Cameron Highlands by-election.

Its chairman Azhar Azizan Harun said the nomination date would be on Jan 12 and early voting would be held on Jan 22.

He added that 32,009 electorate were qualified to cast their votes for the upcoming by-election based on the 2018 third quarter electoral roll, which had been updated last November.

Overseas voting is open for registration from Dec 19 and will be closed on Jan 11, he said.

“The campaign period will last for 14 days and the cost to conduct the by-election is about RM3.5 million,” he told reporters today.

Azhar also said it would be for the first time that the EC would conduct live broadcast of the tallying process via its Facebook and Instagram pages.

“We will factor in the suitability of the voting channel at the chosen polling centre. This move is to give exposure and awareness to the public regarding the vote tallying process during an election,” he said.

The EC chairman also advised all candidates to fill in their forms early and get them check by the Pahang state election office before the nomination day.

“Our officers can conduct pre-check on the form, but this is not formal. It is just to ensure all nomination process can be completed early and smoothly on the nomination day itself,” he added.

He said 811 people had been appointed to conduct the Cameron Highlands by-election and 31 polling centres with 88 voting channels will be used for the said by-election.

“The EC estimates about 70 per cent voters will cast their votes on polling day and we need the help of all quarters, including the media and political parties, to encourage electorate to exercise their rights on that day,” he added.

DAP candidate M. Manogaran has filed a petition on June 4 to apply for the declaration of the result of the Cameron Highlands Parliamentary constituency to be cancelled for violating the Offences Act 1954.

Manogaran, who had contested the Cameron Highlands seat under Pakatan Harapan banner in the May 9 general election, claimed incumbent Datuk Sivarraajh Chandran had allegedly given bribes of between RM30 and RM1,000 to Orang Asli voters through several Tok Batin (community heads) to ensure they voted for Barisan Nasional (BN).

On Nov 30, the Election Court declared BN’s victory in Cameron Highland as null and void due to corrupt practices which had been proven to have been committed with the knowledge and consent of the respondent (Sivarraajh) in the election, namely giving of money to voters to induce them to vote for BN.

Sivarraajh garnered 10,307 votes, beating Manogaran who received 9,710 votes and three others Wan Mahadir Wan Mahmud (Pas) who secured 3,587 votes; Mohd Tahir Kassim (Berjasa) with 81 votes and B. Suresh Kumar (Parti Sosialis Malaysia) who received 680 votes.

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