LUBOK ANTU, 2 April 2009: The Election Commission (EC) is prepared for any eventualities in reaching the most remote corners of the Batang Ai state constituency in next Tuesday’s by-election, its state director Takun Sunggah said today.
He said the 201 election personnel would be deployed to the 25 polling stations and 26 polling streams throughout the 1,341 sq km constituency at least a day in advance to ensure a smooth election as certain locations could only be reached by river transport.
“We are also getting one helicopter on stand-by in case all the 20 boats made available to carry the ballot boxes are stranded due to the shallow rivers and dry weather,” he told Bernama after supervising preparations for the distribution of 43 postal ballots at the Lubok Antu district office here.
He advised the 7,963 ordinary voters in Batang Ai to come out early to vote as some of the polling stations, especially in the interior such as Engkari, would be closed by 11.30am while the postal votes must be returned to the EC before 5pm.
So far the EC had not received any reports of serious offences in the by-election, which will see a straight fight between Barisan Nasional’s Malcolm Mussen Lamoh and Parti Keadilan Rakyat’s (PKR) Jawah Gerang.
The by-election is held following the death of the incumbent assemblyperson Datuk Dublin Unting Ingkot, who was also Agriculture and Sports Assistant Minister on on 24 Feb. — Bernama