Jasin election dispute goes to Federal Court

PETALING JAYA: The dispute over whether Barisan Nasional candidate Ahmad Hamzah won the Jasin parliamentary seat in accordance with election rules last year will continue despite the Election Court’s move in June to dismiss the petition challenging the results.

Khairuddin Abu Hassan, who lost the contest by a narrow margin, told FMT he had filed an appeal to the Federal Court.

“This was done on the advice of my lawyers who are of the opinion that the election judge was wrong in arriving at his decision,” he added.

The former Umno leader who is now with Amanah said the Federal Court should be allowed to make a ruling to bring certainty to the law.

“An apex court pronouncement will also act as precedent and guidance to election court judges,” he added.

On June 12, Khairuddin said he accepted the decision that the Jasin voters had elected Ahmad as their representative in the Dewan Rakyat.

Election judge Abu Bakar Jais said Khairuddin failed to prove that the discrepancies in the election forms raised by him had affected the final results on May 9, 2018.

Ahmad successfully defended the Jasin seat in a three-way fight with Khairuddin and PAS candidate Abd Alim Shapie.

He polled 26,560 votes against Khairuddin’s 26,341. Alim received 8,860 votes.

In his petition, Khairuddin claimed there were discrepancies in the forms as some of the documents did not have the signature of the returning officer while others had the signatures of the candidate’s agents.

He also claimed that more ballot papers were issued than the number of votes cast.

He was ordered to pay RM400,000 in costs to Ahmad, the Election Commission and its returning officer.