KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 18 — Polling for the Padang Serai parliamentary seat in Kedah will be held on December 7, as it could not proceed tomorrow together with the 15th general election (GE15) due to the death of a candidate.
Election Commission (EC) chairman Tan Sri Abdul Ghani Salleh said the nomination of candidates had been fixed for November 24, and early voting on December 3.
He said EC received the Election Writ which was returned by the Padang Serai returning officer on Wednesday, in connection with the death of Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate M. Karupaiya on the same day.
“The campaign period is fixed for 13 days, beginning from the announcement of contesting candidates on November 24 until 11.59pm on December 6,” Abdul Ghani said in a statement today.
Online applications for all categories of local and overseas postal voting opened today (November 18) and will close on November 22.
He said Padang Serai candidates whose names had been confirmed earlier still need to be present at the nomination centre for the purpose of drawing lots to determine their position on the ballot paper.
Any prospective candidates wishing to stand in the election must submit their nomination papers which have been filled up and checked, at the nomination centre, he said.
EC has designated Dewan Kompleks Sukan Kulim Hi-Tech in Kulim as the nomination centre and vote-tallying centre.
Abdul Ghani said EC had appointed Kulim District Officer Datuk Abdul Bari Abdullah as the returning officer for the Padang Serai election, and he will be assisted by six assistant returning officers.
A total of 2,468 staff will be appointed to conduct the election, while 46 ordinary polling centres with 230 voting streams and one early polling centre with two voting streams will be used, he added.
Abdul Ghani said an estimated RM1.6 million was needed to conduct the Padang Serai poll.
The August 2022 Additional Electoral Roll, updated as of October 9, which contains 133,867 voters, comprising 133,776 ordinary voters, 76 police personnel and 15 absentee voters abroad, will be used for the election.
“EC would like to advise all those involved with polling, nomination and other matters on the election to wear a face mask, practise physical distancing and sanitise their hands,” Abdul Ghani said.
Karupaiya, 69, died at Hospital Kulim on Wednesday after suffering a heart and collapsing during his campaign rounds on Monday.
Karupaiya was fielded to defend the seat in a six-cornered fight against Hamzah Abd Rahman (Pejuang), Datuk C. Sivaraajh (Barisan Nasional), Mohd Bakhri Hashim (Warisan), Datuk Azman Nasrudin (Perikatan Nasional) and independent candidate Sreanandha Rao.
In GE14, Karupaiya won the seat by a majority of 8,813 votes, beating PAS’ Muhamad Sobri Osman and Barisan Nasional’s Datuk Leong Yong Kong.