The Chini state by-election in Pahang will be held on July 4 with nomination set for June 20 and early voting on June 30.
Election Commission chairman Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun announced the important dates at a press conference after the EC held a special meeting on the by-election yesterday.
Azhar said nomination day will be on June 20 while early voting will be conducted on June 30.
The by-election is under extra scrutiny as it will be the first to be conducted in Malaysia in the middle of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.
The EC chief added that the by-election will be in full compliance with guidelines from the conditional movement order (CMCO) that is due to expire on June 9.
Azhar said the processes involved in the by-election will be broadcast on Facebook live through the EC’s Facebook page as usual.
He said a total of 832 personnel have been appointed to conduct the Chini by-election, while 14 polling centres comprising 66 voting streams will be used to facilitate the voting process.
He added that the Chini by-election would require an allocation of about RM4.3 million.
The commission would also use the 2019 main electoral roll, which was updated on May 7 this year, for this by-election.
Based on this electoral roll, the Chini state seat comprises 20,990 registered voters. Out of that total, 20,972 were regular voters and 18 were police personnel from the early voters’ category.
He said voters could check details on the electoral roll and polling centres at www.spr.gov.my, hotline at 03-8827018, via SMS at 15888 or via the MySPR Semak app beginning June 3.
The EC is targeting a 70 percent voter turnout and encourages voters to go out to vote.
Azhar said the EC was continually improving the voting process by providing streams for 60-year-old voters and above.
It would also extend the voting time by 30 minutes, which meant that polling would be from 8am to 5.30pm instead of finishing at 5pm.
He said the EC would be adding 20 new streams to avoid overcrowding, while allocating the first voting stream for persons with disabilities.
“For this by-election, we have identified 289 people with disabilities who are registered with the Welfare Department.”
Azhar said postal voting applications for those in Malaysia and those overseas can be done from May 15 to June 18.
The seat fell vacant after the incumbent, Datuk Seri Abu Bakar Harun, 60, from Barisan Nasional, died at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital of a heart attack on May 6.
In the 14th general election (GE14) held in May 2018, Abu Bakar polled 10,027 votes to win the seat by a majority of 4,622 votes against PAS candidate Mohd Fadhil Noor Abdul Karim who obtained 5,405 votes and Mohamad Razali Ithnain of PKR (1,065 votes).
Barisan Nasional secretary-general Tan Sri Annuar Musa has announced the coalition’s intention to defend the seat.
The by-election campaign is likely to feature former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak as the state seat falls under his Pekan federal constituency.