PETALING JAYA: Umno will be fielding its deputy president, Mohamad Hassan, to contest in the upcoming by-election for the Rantau state assembly seat.
Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today said the election court’s decision to nullify the victory of the former Negeri Sembilan menteri besar, fondly known as Tok Mat, was expected.
He said the Barisan Nasional (BN) machinery will be fully mobilised to assist Mohamad secure the state seat.
“Despite the numerous constraints and challenges, Rantau must be defended.
“For the sake of our dignity and continuity, Umno and BN must come together,” he said on Twitter.
Earlier, the Election Court had allowed the petition by PKR candidate Dr Streram Sinnasamy for a fresh election to be held for the Rantau state seat in Negeri Sembilan.
Judge Azimah Omar said incumbent assemblyman, Mohamad, had not been duly elected, adding that there would have been a contest for the seat if Streram had been allowed to file his nomination papers on April 28.
She said there was ample evidence to show that Streram, his proposer and seconder were denied entry to the nomination centre, which led to Mohamad winning the Rantau seat uncontested.
Streram filed the petition on May 23 to nullify the Election Commission’s (EC) decision to declare Mohamad the winner of the Rantau state seat.
It was reported that Mohamad is ready to defend the Rantau seat which he has held since 2004 after defeating PKR candidate Badrul Hisham Shaharin, also known as Chegubard, with a 6,199-vote majority.
He went on to defend the seat in GE12 and GE13, defeating PKR candidate Aishah Lamsah with a majority of 4,613 and 3,783 votes in the two elections.
PAS gives way to Umno
Meanwhile, PAS today said it will not be contesting in the by-election for the Rantau state assembly seat.
The Islamist party’s secretary-general, Takiyuddin Hassan, said this was to give way for Mohamad to contest and defend his seat.
“We didn’t even contest there during GE14 and it is Tok Mat’s traditional seat,” he told FMT.