ALOR SETAR: The Election Commission has blacklisted 52 individuals from contesting in the general election even as polls fever heats up with a record number of independent candidates expected.
Its deputy chairman Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar said those who failed to submit their statement of election returns after the last polls would be automatically disqualified.
“The statement of election returns should be submitted within 30 days after the results are gazetted, failing which the individual will be automatically disqualified to contest subsequent elections,” he said.
He warned that candidates who participated in elections over the last five years as well as their election agents would be automatically disqualified if they did not submit their returns within the stipulated period.
Among other disqualifying factors are insanity and cases in which those wanting to contest are non-citizens, minors aged below 21 years or declared bankrupt.
He also reminded the candidates that under the Election Offences Act, they would also be held responsible for offences committed by their election agents.
Wan Ahmad said it would certainly be a crowded race as people were still buying nomination forms yesterday.
“Seven-cornered fights in Sabah are normal. But in the peninsula, we will see a crowded race in many constituencies for the first time,” he said, advising candidates to make their way to the nomination centres early.
“As they only have one hour to register as candidates and with many independents expecting to join in the fray, it would be advisa-ble for them to go early,” he said.
Wishing all the candidates the best in the elections, Wan Ahmad said they must also make sure that their proposer and seconder were registered voters within the constituency they were contesting in.
“Otherwise, they may have a hard time finding replacement before nomination closes at 10am,” he said, urging candidates to check their nomination forms thoroughly the night before and bring along the consent letter from their party leader to use the party symbol.
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