PETALING JAYA: A lawyer has questioned the presence of Mohamad Hasan in the Negeri Sembilan state assembly after the election court last month declared the Rantau state seat that he won unopposed as vacant.
Lim Wei Jit said an order of the court was valid and must be respected if there was no stay obtained.
“The Courts of Judicature Act states an appeal to a higher court did not operate as an automatic stay,” he said.
Lim said the speaker of the Negeri Sembilan state assembly should deal with the matter.
“Mohamad will be perceived as a ‘stranger’ in the house unless he had obtained a stay to represent the constituents,” he said in response to the former Negeri Sembilan menteri besar participating in the on-going state legislative proceedings.
On Nov 16, Election Court judge Azimah Omar allowed PKR candidate Dr Streram Sinnasamy’s petition for a fresh election to be held, ruling that Mohamad had not been duly elected.
Meanwhile, Mohamad Haniff Khatri Abdulla, a counsel who appeared for Streram, said he was not aware that Mohamad had obtained any stay order to represent the Rantau constituents.
“An application for a stay was also not served on us. We will check with the lawyers representing Mohamad,” he added.
FMT has contacted Mohamed Hafarizam Harun, the lead counsel for Mohamad, for a response.
Mohamad is the state opposition leader after Pakatan Harapan was swept into power, winning 20 of the 36 seats in the legislature.
It was reported yesterday that the opposition walked out of the state assembly after speaker Zulkefly Omar did not allow the tabling of a motion to discuss the state’s stand on the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD).
All the 16 opposition assemblymen left after Zulkefly did not allow Mohamad to table the motion, saying that the ICERD issue had been resolved at the federal level by the prime minister.
The house then continued with the budget session.
Meanwhile, state executive councillor Nicole Tan Lee Koon, said in a text message that Mohamad also spoke on the state budget today as the opposition leader.
Azimah, in her ruling, said there would have been a contest for the seat if Streram had been allowed to file his nomination papers on April 28.
She also said there was ample evidence that Streram, his proposer and seconder were denied entry to the nomination centre.
She said there was no law or regulation barring candidates, their proposers and seconders from walking into nomination centres to file their papers.
Returning officer Amino Agos Suyub had declared Mohamad the winner as there was no other contestant for the seat.
The Federal Court has fixed Feb 18 to hear the appeal by the Election Commission and Mohamad to set aside the Election Court’s order to hold fresh polls for the Rantau seat.