KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 12 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will contest the Port Dickson parliamentary seat after the incumbent resigned to make way for the PKR president-elect to return to Parliament, Dewan Rakyat Speaker Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof’s office confirmed today.
“For your information, yes,” a spokesman from his office told Malay Mail when contacted
PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli was earlier seen at the Dewan Rakyat building this morning and it is understood that he delivered incumbent Port Dickson MP Datuk Danyal Balagopal Abdullah’s resignation letter to the Speaker’s office.
PKR is planning to trigger a by-election for Anwar to contest in order to ensure his return to Parliament and qualify him to be prime minister.
Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) victory in Port Dickson was among the more unexpected upsets of the general election as the constituency is home to a significant military population that had traditionally been a Barisan Nasional (BN) vote bank.
In an official statement later, Mohamad Ariff confirmed the seat vacancy, adding that he has already informed the Election Commission (EC) deputy chairman of Danyal’s resignation.
“Therefore, in line with Clause 1, Article 54 of the Federal Constitution, the Election Commission has to fill the P.132 Port Dickson parliamentary seat, within 60 days from the EC’s confirmation of the vacancy,” the statement read.
Several of PKR’s top guns held a press conference this afternoon, together with Danyal, where the latter announced his decision to step down to make way for Anwar.
Anwar was not be present as he is on the way back from Hong Kong and is only scheduled to arrive later this evening.
Following earlier speculation of Anwar’s candidacy, the National Patriots Association lamented that the move could encounter a “backlash” from voting servicemen in Port Dickson, Negri Sembilan if Danyal — a retired admiral — was forced to make way for him.
The group representing retired security personnel pointed out that PKR took an unlikely victory in the coastal town during the general election as the military personnel there chose Danyal, a retired First Admiral, to represent them.