PUTRAJAYA (Bernama): The Court of Appeal has postponed the hearing for a stay of execution of a three month jail sentence meted out on a returning officer (RO) for the Rembau parliamentary seat for contempt of court.
Justice Datuk Dr Hamid Sultan Abu Backer, who chaired a three-man bench, said he doubted the appellate court had the jurisdiction to hear the matter as the case originated from the Election Court.
"You go to the Federal Court, and if the Federal Court says go back to the Court of Appeal, we hear it tomorrow," he said on Monday (Oct 15).
By consent of both parties, Justice Dr Hamid stayed the proceedings to enable the counsel for the Election Commission (EC) and the RO, Amino Agos Suyub, to file the stay of execution application at the Federal Court.
Justice Dr Hamid said the Court of Appeal would hear the application if the Federal Court decided that it (Court of Appeal) had the jurisdiction to hear the matter.
Presiding with him were Justices Datuk Zabariah Mohd Yusof and Datuk Hanipah Farikullah.
Last Wednesday (Oct 10), Election Court Judge Datuk Azimah Omar found Amino Agos guilty of coaching a witness in an election petition brought by Pakatan Harapan candidate Dr S. Streram and sentenced him (Amino Agos) to three months' jail.
Dr Streram had filed the election petition seeking to nullify the EC's decision in declaring Barisan Nasional candidate Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan as the winner of the Rantau state seat, one of four state seats in the Rembau parliamentary constituency.
Mohamad won the seat unopposed after Amino Agos refused to allow Dr Streram into the nomination centre on grounds that he (Dr Streram) did not have a valid pass issued by the EC.
In his defence, Amino Agos denied he had the intention to coach the witness, Daing Muhamad Rahimi, who was the assistant returning officer for the Rembau parliamentary constituency on nomination day during the 14th General Election, on how to testify in court
He claimed the WhatsApp message to the witness was sent as a way to vent his feelings.
Lawyer G. Rajasingam appeared for the EC and Amino Agos, while lawyer Muhammad Rafique Rashid Ali represented Dr Streram. – Bernama