PORT DICKSON, July 25 — Pakatan Harapan will hold talks with former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to determine the candidate who will contest the Slim state by-election. 

PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said a decision is expected to be reached on Tuesday. 

“It is misleading to say that we (PH) will surrender to them (Tun Mahathir’s team to contest). No.. negotiations (are) still on.

“….the last Chini (Pahang state seat) by-election, our concern was about COVID-19 and the scope of campaign was very limited and we decided to opt out but now we have to review the decision. I think we will come out with a decision on Tuesday,” he told reporters after officiating an interview session programme for the USCI Hospital here today.

Anwar was asked to respond to claims that PH would be giving way to Dr Mahathir’s team to contest the polls for the state constituency in Perak. 

The media quoted former Bersatu secretary-general Datuk Marzuki Yahya as saying that Dr Mahathir’s group would be fielding a candidate, claiming that the decision was reached after a PH presidential council representative said it (PH) would not be contesting.

“I am not aware of the meeting that they had but we are sending representatives from PH to discuss with Tun Mahathir’s team,” he said. 

The Election Commission (EC) has set the by-election for Slim to be held on Aug 29, with nomination on Aug 15, while early voting is on Aug 25.

The seat fell vacant after its incumbent Datuk Mohd Khusairi Abdul Talib, 59, died on July 15 at the Bentong Hospital, Pahang due to a heart attack.

Mohd Khusairi who represented Barisan Nasional had retained the seat with a majority of 2,183 votes in the 14th General Election in 2018 in a three-cornered contest among Bersatu’s Mohd Amran Ibrahim and Muhammad Zulfadli Zainal of PAS.

The Slim state by-election would be the 12th by-election to be held after 14th General Election.


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