Contest for MTUC president ends in deadlock, Solomon loses sec-gen’s position

Incumbent J Solomon was defeated by Kamarul Baharin Mansor for the secretary-general’s post.

PETALING JAYA: For the first time in the 71-year history of the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC), a contest for a key position at its triennial delegates conference ended in a tie.

Incumbent president Abdul Halim Mansor of the National Union of Petroleum and Chemical Industries Worker (NUPCIW) and his challenger Mohd Jafar Abd Majid of the National Union of Telecommunication Employees (NUTE) each obtained 136 votes.

A third challenger, Nor Azlan Yaacob from the Timber Employees Union (TEU) secured 102 votes.

Newly-elected secretary-general Kamarul Baharin Mansor of the National Union of Management of Waste (NUMW) said he would study the MTUC constitution on the next step to be taken.

“I will also seek advice from the Registrar of Societies (RoS) as such an outcome in the result for a key position is unprecedented,” he told FMT.

Kamarul said he would also convene a meeting of the working committee, which runs the day-to-day affairs of the union, for their opinions.

In the interim, newly-elected deputy president Mohd Effendy Abdul Ghani of the Union of Postal Clerical Workers will be acting president.

Meanwhile, Kamarul’s win was also considered an upset as he defeated incumbent secretary-general J Solomon in a three-cornered fight.

Kamarul polled 143 votes, Gopal Kishnam Nadeson of the National Union of Transport Equipment and Allied Industries Workers (NUTEAIW) secured 132 votes while Solomon (National Union of Bank Employees) obtained 98 votes.

A total of 507 delegates were eligible to attend the conference but only about 400 were present as some from Sarawak stayed away due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Despite yesterday’s outcome, four unions have gone to court to challenge the validity of calling for the meeting.

Their lawyer Srividhya Ganapathy said the calling of the special delegates conference is not in compliance with MTUC’s constitution.

The unions want the RoS to intervene and supervise the election and ensure the working committee acted in accordance with the constitution.

A case management had been fixed on Sept 29.