Aug 5 for Decision on Kamalanathan's Bid to Strike Out Zaid’s Petition

Malaysian Digest
KUALA LUMPUR, July 23 JULY, 2010:Come Aug 5, the Election Court here will decide on an application by Hulu Selangor Member of Parliament P. Kamalanathan to strike out an election petition by Datuk Zaid Ibrahim who lost in the parliamentary election.
High Court Judge Datuk Azahar Mohamed, who sat as election judge, set the date after counsels for both parties wrapped up their four-day submissions today.
Zaid, who is now Federal Territory Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) chief, filed the petition on May 24, naming Kamalanathan, returning officer Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan and the Election Commission as respondents.
Zaid, who lost with a 1,725-vote majority in the election on April 25, wants the court to declare the results of the election as null and void, on the grounds of corrupt practice in the form of bribery and promises to the voters.
At the outset, Kamalanathan’s counsel Firoz Hussein Ahmad Jamaluddin, in his reply to submissions by Zaid’s counsel yesterday, said the PKR chief in his petition, had failed to plead the elements of promise and bargain which led the voters to change their mind in not voting for Zaid.
He also submitted more on the technicality and administrative point on how the petition was served and filed, which he said, was defective as it did not follow the mandatory requirement under the Election Offences Act 1958.
In replying to Firoz’s submissions, Zaid’s counsel Malik Imtiaz Sarwar said the court should not focus on the several election petition cases which were struck off upon hearing applications to strike them out.
Instead, he said, the court should set a policy in rejecting such applications and proceed to hear the evidence, by way of a full trial.
During the hearing, Firoz, in persuading the court to allow Kamalanathan’s application, said that almost 90 percent of the election petitions had been struck off by the Election Court and the ruling was affirmed by the Federal Court, without the trial being heard.
– Bernama