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Saturday September 12, 2009

Postal vote issue will haunt us, says PAS man

PORT DICKSON: Ramli Ismail, who is strongly tipped to contest in the Bagan Pinang state by-election next month, has cautioned that the postal vote issue would “haunt” the Opposition in the by-election.

The retired warrant officer, who contested the seat in the general election last year, said that being a former serviceman did not guarantee any candidate a bigger share of the postal votes.

“It (postal votes) is a big problem,” he said.

In the last general election, Ramli, who is Teluk Kemang PAS chief, lost to Barisan Nasional’s Azman Mohammad Noor by a 2,333-vote majority.

Azman polled 6,430 votes while Ramli got 4,097.

Of the 4,800 postal votes, 3,080 went to Barisan while 1,189 to PAS. The remaining were either spoilt or the ballot papers were not returned.

The latest gazzetted electoral roll shows that there are now 5,171 postal voters in the constituency. They make up 37% of the total number of voters.

Asked if he was prepared to contest again, Ramli, 61, said nothing had been finalised, adding: “Let the party leadership decide.”

The other names being bandied about to contest are former Teluk Kemang PAS head Dr Rosli Yaakob and state PAS commissioner Zulkefly Mohamad Omar.

Dr Rosli, 58, had contested against former Mentri Besar Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad for the Linggi state seat in two general elections.

He also contested the Paroi state seat in the 2004 general election against Barisan’s Bibi Sharliza, but lost.

Zulkefly, who is only 45, may also be fielded although he failed three times to unseat Barisan candidates in the Lenggeng state seat.

State PAS secretary Shamsul Kamal Idris said the list of candidates would be submitted to the party headquarters tomorrow.

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