Ex-beauty queen loses petition to declare Kiulu polls invalid

Former beauty queen Joanna Rampas. (Facebook pic)

KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) Supreme Council member Joniston Bangkuai will keep the Kiulu state seat, the Election Court declared today.

It struck out an election petition challenging his victory on May 9.

According to Bangkuai’s lead counsel, Tengku Fuad Tengku Ahmad, the petition filed by Warisan candidate Jo-Anna Sue Henley Rampas was struck out with costs of RM20,000.

Rampas was represented by Mary Florence Gomez and Edina Sung Burongoh.

The election commission, which was originally named as the second defendant in the petition, had been discharged earlier.

Tengku Fuad said Justice Supang Lian struck out the petition because the petitioner had failed to serve the petition in accordance with election petition rules.

“One of these is the failure by the petitioner to properly state the polling dates, including the advance polling date,” he said to reporters today.

Advance polling for the 14th general election took place on May 5. The public voted on May 9.

Election petition rules require petitioners to state both dates in their petitions.

Other than this, Tengku Fuad said the court also considered a few other grounds but did not explain further.

“With this result, Bangkuai has thus been returned as the duly elected assemblyman of Kiulu,” he said.

Bangkuai retained the Kiulu seat after obtaining 4,338 votes against Rampas’s 2,893 votes.

On Monday, the election court will also hear another election petition filed against Kimanis MP Anifah Aman who defeated Warisan candidate Karim Bujang by 156 votes.