PETALING JAYA: Holding a by-election to replace a serving Mentri Besar has been done before in Selangor.
The precedent was set in 1997 when the then Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk (now Tan Sri) Abu Hassan Omar replaced Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib.
Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad handpicked him after Muhammad was forced to resign following two charges in an Australian court over his failure to declare cash equivalent of RM2.4mil while leaving Brisbane International Airport in December 1996.
Abu Hassan, who was deputy Selangor Umno liaison chief, resigned from his Cabinet position and as Kuala Selangor MP to contest the Permatang state seat in a direct swap with incumbent Datuk Jamaluddin Adnan.
Permatang is in the Kuala Selangor parliamentary constituency.
Barisan Nasional retained both the Permatang state and Kuala Selangor parliamentary seats in the by-elections held on May 29, 2007.
Abu Hassan was subsequently sworn in on June 6, 1997.
He quit as Mentri Besar in 2000, citing health and family reasons.
His resignation came after talk of an alleged scandal that involved a relative.
If Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim contests in Kajang, it will be the second time a by-election is held to accommodate him.
His wife Datin Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail stepped down as Permatang Pauh MP on July 31, 2008 and a by-election was held on Aug 26. Wan Azizah was Opposition Leader at the time.
Anwar won and was sworn into Parliament on Aug 28, taking over as the Opposition Leader.
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