Pakatan not contesting Chini by-election, cites safety and health of voters amid Covid-19 pandemic

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – Pakatan Harapan will not field any candidates in the upcoming Chini by-election, says its secretary-general Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution.

He said although the Health Ministry and frontliners have been able to curb the spread of Covid-19, the outbreak has not been fully contained.

Saifuddin added at the same time, in the context of the “new normal” where the standard operating procedure (SOP) was being drafted in the run-up to the election, the safety and health aspects of voters are still a concern.

“Therefore, taking the consideration of all the above, PKR and the Pakatan Harapan presidential council agreed that PKR will not field any candidates in the Chini by-election,” he said in a statement on Saturday (June 6).

The Chini by-election was triggered after the death of incumbent assemblyman Datuk Seri Abu Bakar Harun on May 6.

In GE14, Abu Bakar obtained 10,027 votes against Mohd Fadhil Noor Abdul Karim of PAS (5,405) and Mohamad Razali Ithnain of PKR (1,065 votes).

The Election Commission has fixed nomination day on June 20, with polling on July 4.

Saifuddin also noted that the SOPs being drawn up would impact campaigning and fieldwork as there would be a ban on public gatherings with more than 20 people and the fact that the procedure for house-to-house campaigns and other important aspects have not been finalised in the context of election preparation.

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