Anwar: Balingian By-Election in Sarawak Not Wasteful?

KAJANG, 13 Feb: The move by the Sarawak Chief Minster, Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, in stepping down from his position, which would result in a by-election to be held in the Balingian State Legislative Assembly (DUN) is seen as ‘spiting on one’s own face’.

The PKR de facto leader, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, said that statement because the by-election will be held when government leaders are criticising him on the issue of the resignation of the former Kajang Assemblyman, Lee Chin Cheh.

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“The one in Sarawak is not a waste. It’s saving.

“In less than two weeks of criticising us, he (Taib) resigned,” Anwar said sarcastically in his talk at the Penghulu Complex at Batu 10.

The Chairmen of the Election Commission (EC), Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof, said that the Balingian DUN by-election will be held if the incumbent, Taib Mahmud, vacates the seat before 21 June.

However, if Taib vacates the seat after this date, the EC will no longer need to hold any by-election, not only in that area, but throughout Sarawak.

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According to the Law, the by-election will not be held if there is any vacancy in the period if two years, before the State Legislative Assembly expires.

The Sarawak State Legislative Assembly expires on 20 June 2016 and the two-year period starts on 21 June 2014.

Prior to this, the Prime Minster, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, said that the upcoming Kajang by-election was a waste of money by Pakatan Rakyat.

He said that the decision to hold the by-election was merely to resolve the power struggle within PKR.

Meanwhile, the former Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, said that Umno was wasteful earlier when there were two by-elections in Selangor some time back for the Kuala Selangor Parliament and the Permatang DUN.

He said that there was nothing strange when a representative of the people resigns to make way for a by-election to be held.

Following Najib’s statement, the PAS Mursyidul Am, Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, suggested for Barisan Nasional (BN) to not place a candidate in the Kajang by-election if they think that it is wasteful.

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