KANGAR, April 10 — All parties should respect the decision of the Election Commission (EC) today which set May 9 as the polling date for the 14th General Election (GE14), said Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh.
He said the EC certainly had its reasonable cause for choosing a working day as the polling date for the GE14.
“We respect the EC’s decision and it is not an issue,” he told reporters after officiating the Kangar Community College here today.
The EC also announced that nomination was set for April 28 and early voting for May 5.
Many have expressed their dissatisfaction with the EC’s decision of fixing May 9 as the GE14 date because it is a weekday which will make it difficult for voters to return to their hometowns to cast their votes.
Asked on whether all institutions of higher learning staff would be granted leave of absence on May 9, Idris said it was up to the management of each institution.
In Negri Sembilan, the state BN adhered to the decision of the EC that set the campaign period of 11 days for the GE14, compared to 15 days in the last general election.
Negri Sembilan BN chairman Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan said the EC might have had its own reason in making the decision which should be respected by all parties.
“Once the Parliament is dissolved, it is up to the EC. The EC holds a meeting with all of its members and made the decision.
“I also did not expect that we will go to the polls on May 9, that is on a working day. As far as I know, the country’s elections were usually held on weekends, only twice or three times they were held during weekdays,” he told reporters after officiating the open-air hall of Sekolah Kebangsaan Taman Tuanku Jaafar, Sungai Gadut, near Seremban today.
Mohamad said the state BN would draw up strategies to ensure that the percentage of voter turnout would reach not less than 80 per cent. — Bernama