Apr 19, 2007

It's a straight FIGHT for Ijok

After Machap, here comes Ijok. Another preliminary fight before the general election. Will the alternative political party manage to wrestle with the money buying Barisan Nasional party? The power lies in the hands of Ijok voters.

KUALA SELANGOR, April 19 (Bernama) -- The Ijok state by-election in Selangor on April 28 will see a straight fight between Barisan Nasional (BN) and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).

BN's K.Parthiban, 38, who is Tanjung Karang MIC secretary, will face PKR's Selangor chairman Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, 61.

The announcement was made by the returning officer, Haris Kasim, after the nomination and objection period ended at 11am at the Batang Berjuntai community hall which served as the nomination centre.

No objections had been filed over the nomination of the two candidates.

Haris' announcement at 11.05am was greeted with loud cheers and applause from the supporters of both parties.

The by-election is being held following the death of BN assemblyman Datuk K. Sivalingam, of heart failure on April 4. Polling is on April 28.

This is PKR's second attempt for the Ijok seat. In the 2004 general election, Sivalingam beat PKR's Abdol Raman Moharam by a 1,649-vote majority.

Among the BN leaders present to lend their support for Parthiban were Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who is BN deputy chairman, Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo who is Selangor BN chairman, MIC president Datuk Seri S.Samy Vellu, MCA deputy president Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy, PPP president Datuk M. Kayveas and acting Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon.

Abdul Khalid was accompanied by PKR president Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, PAS deputy president Nasharuddin Mat Isa and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.

Parthiban filed his nomination papers 20 minutes after the nomination centre opened at 9am while Abdul Khalid filed his at 9.36am today.

Earlier, the nomination was marred by a shoving incident involving the supporters of both parties when they inadvertently crossed each other's path on the way to the nomination centre.

They were heard trading insults and seen shoving each other for 10 minutes.

The situation returned to normal following police intervention as the BN entourage made way for the opposition.

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