CAMERON HIGHLANDS — The by-election for the Cameron Highlands parliamentary seat is likely to be a four-cornered fight pitting two parties and two independents.
Four people filed their candidacy at Dewan Gemilang in SMK Sultan Ahmad Shah here today when nominations opened.
They were Ramli Mohd Noor from BN, M. Manogaran (DAP), independent candidate Sallehudin Ab Talib, who is a senior lecturer in Institut Aminuddin Baki Genting Highland and another independent candidate Wong Seng Yee, who is a local farmer and activist.
Nominations close at 10am.
LIVE: Two independents join Manogaran, Ramli in nomination centre
NOMINATIONS will be filed today for the Cameron Highlands by-election, kicking off a 14-day campaign period that will end at the polls on January 26.
The by-election for the federal constituency in Pahang is the fifth in the seven month since the May 9 general election. Pakatan Harapan has won the last four polls in Sg Kandis, Sri Setia, Balakong and Port Dickson.
A relatively young parliamentary seat created in 2003, Cameron Highlands has from the first election in 2004 proved to be a stronghold of Barisan Nasional, which holds the seat via its ethnic Indian component, MIC.
BN’s fourth straight win was nullified in November when a special election court found that the winning candidate, MIC vice-president C. Sivarraajh, had bribed voters in the run up to the polls.
It is the first time a Orang Asli candidate is contesting the seat, where the community makes up about 22% of the voters.
Ramli’s main rival will be Pakatan Harapan’s M. Manogaran, from DAP, who had lost to Sivarraajh by 597 votes.
It was Manogaran who filed an election petition against Sivarraajh over vote buying.
This will be the DAP man’s second bid for the seat after his first try in 2013.
MyPPP president M. Kayveas, is also expected to throw his hat in the ring.
Whether more candidates will join the fray remains to be seen. Cameron Highlands has seen five-cornered fights in the last two general elections.
The Malaysian Insight brings you live updates from the nomination centre at SMK Sultan Ahmad Shah in Tanah Rata:
9.35am: MyPPP president M. Kayveas arrives at the nomination centre with about 50 supporters in tow. They wave white party flags and pose for photos before going inside.
9.21am: Independents Sallehuddin Ab Talib and Wong Seng Yee file their nominations to make it four candidates so far.
9.12am: PH candidate M. Manogaran enters the centre, followed by BN’s Ramli Mohd Noor. There is still no sign of MyPPP president M. Kayveas, who has previously announced his candidacy as an independent.
9am: Nomination opens.
Three independents are expected to join the fight for Cameron Highlands, among which is MyPPP president M. Kayveas. Three seats with their names on them have been prepared for them outside the nomination centre.
8.50am: BN candidate Ramli Mohd Noor appears, alongside acting Umno president Mohamad Hassan and Pahang Menteri Besar Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail.
8.45am: PAS leaders Iskandar Samad and Takiyuddin Hassan arrive at the nomination centre.
8.40am: Umno vice-president Mahadzir Khalid and Umno information chief Shamsul Annuar Nasarah pose with supporters.
8.20am: Water, Land and Natural Resources Minister Xavier Jayakumar and Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo join their colleagues.
Pakatan Harapan candidate M. Manogaran arrives accompanied by Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali, Human Resource Minister M. Kula Segaran and Deputy Defence Minister Liew Chin Tong.
More than 200 BN supporters are gathered outside the nomination centre.