EC eyes 70% voter turnout in Port Dickson

KUALA LUMPUR: The Election Commission (EC) expects a voter turnout of around 70% in the Port Dickson parliamentary by-election scheduled on Oct 13.

EC chairman Azhar Harun said this was based on several factors including candidates who seemed to appeal to voters in the constituency.

“There are really strong candidates… (with) differing backgrounds and with different sets of voters supporting them,” he said in a talk show produced by Astro Awani and aired last night.

He said he expected the numbers to be higher than in the Sungai Kandis and Balakong by-elections, which both recorded low voter turnouts.

The Port Dickson by-election is a seven-cornered tussle between Pakatan Harapan’s Anwar Ibrahim, PAS’ Mohd Nazari Mokhtar and five independent candidates including former Negeri Sembilan menteri besar Isa Samad and Anwar’s former personal assistant Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

On complaints that the Port Dickson by-election is a waste of public money, Azhar said under the law, an MP could resign at any time without any reason.

“Here we have a case of a duly-elected MP who decided to resign and give way to Anwar to be nominated (as a candidate) in a by-election.

“Under the law, he can do that, and by doing that he triggered the by-election. The EC’s concern is that when there is a vacancy and we have to have a by-election and that’s it,” he said.