LUNDU – The Tanjong Datu by-election on Feb 18 will see a three-cornered contest between candidates from Barisan Nasional (BN), State Reform Party (STAR) and the New Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS).
BN will field Datuk Amar Jamilah Anu, while the PBDS candidate is Rapelson Richard Hamit and STAR candidate is Johnny Aput.
The names of the candidates were announced by Tanjong Datu state seat by-election returning officer Datu Hamsein Atar at the nomination centre, Lundu community hall, about 10.15am, Saturday.
Hamsein, when making the announcement, said four people came forward to submit their nomination papers but after checking the papers, he was satisfied that one name was rejected.
After the announcement, when referred to the nomination of Asbor Abdullah who wished to contest in the by-election as an independent candidate, Hamsein said his nomination was rejected as upon checking, it was found that the man (Asbor) had previously contested in an election but did not send in his financial statement after the contest.
He said a check with the Department of Insolvency also found that the man had once been declared a bankrupt, hence he did not qualify to contest in the by-election.
The Tanjong Datu by-election is being held following the death of its incumbent, Sarawak’s fifth chief minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem from heart complications on Jan 11, and the Election Commission set Feb 18 for polling.
Sarawak BN held a meeting last Wednesday to choose Adenan’s widow, Datuk Amar Jamilah Anu, 61, as its candidate in the by-election, while PKR which had contested the seat in the last state election announced that it would not be contesting in the upcoming by-election.
The 11th Sarawak state election last May saw Adenan, 72, garnering 6,360 votes, defeating the PKR candidate, Jazolkipli Numan who only obtained 468 votes.
About 250 election workers have been appointed to conduct the by-election, estimated to cost RM997,919. The Tanjong Datu state seat has 9,959 registered voters including 188 early voters.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg and several state cabinet ministers joined the procession of BN supporters from the Lundu District Mosque grounds this morning towards the nomination centre.
Jamilah arrived at the nomination centre at 9.17am.