KOTA KINABALU: Former foreign minister Anifah Aman said he is not surprised by the Federal Court’s decision to declare his election in the Kimanis parliamentary seat null and void.
He said he has not decided whether to contest again if the Election Commission (EC) calls for a by-election for the seat.
“I will take a good rest and thereon, fight for Sabah’s rights. I don’t have to be a Member of Parliament to fight for our rights,” he told FMT.
The Federal Court had earlier today decided to uphold the Aug 16 decision of the election court to declare the result for the Kimanis seat in the last general election null and void.
A five-member bench led by Chief Justice Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat said there was no error by the election judge in the finding of facts.
“There were numerous discrepancies in the conduct and widespread non-compliance of the election laws,” she said in a unanimous ruling, adding that this had affected the outcome of the polls.
Anifah, a former Umno man turned independent, had earlier expressed disappointment over the EC’s decision not to appeal against the election court ruling “as it was its men who had flopped”.
The election court agreed with the petitioner, Warisan’s Karim Bujang, that there was misconduct on the part of EC in handling Forms 13 and 14 that affected some 341 ballots.
The court, however, cleared Anifah of corruption or bribery allegations.
In GE14, Anifah had won the seat with a 156-vote majority in a three-cornered fight, securing 11,942 votes against Karim, who gained 11,786 votes, and Parti Harapan’s Jaafar Ismail, who garnered 1,300 votes.
Anifah quit Umno last year citing the party’s failure to deliver state rights. He has since been seen taking part in roadshows and talking about winning back the state’s rights.
Anifah said he will sit down with his lawyers to decide what to do next.