Malaysia election: PKR endorses 22-year-old law student as its candidate for Batu

Independent candidate P. Prabakaran will contest the Batu parliamentary seat.
Independent candidate P. Prabakaran will contest the Batu parliamentary seat.PHOTO: THE STAR / ASIA NEWS NETWORK

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's opposition Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) will endorse independent candidate P. Prabakaran to contest for the Batu parliamentary seat in a bid to avoid the constituency from falling into the hands of Barisan Nasional (BN).

It comes after the High Court on Friday (May 4) dismissed incumbent Tian Chua's suit to determine whether he was qualified to contest in the general election.

 

The PKR vice-president said the move was endorsed by the party leadership and Prabakaran has also agreed to subscribe to the opposition manifesto, Malaysia's news site Free Malaysia Today reported on Friday.

"I will now accompany him to introduce him to voters in the constituency," he told reporters.

Election campaign materials will also be provided by the opposition party to ensure that voters cast their ballots for 22-year-old Prabakaran.

Mr Chua said a giant gathering involving Pakatan Harapan national leaders will be held within the next five days.

Law student Mr Prabakaran is the youngest election candidate. Previously, he said that he had no plans to join any political party following suggestions for PKR to endorse one of the independent candidates as their representative in the constituency after Tian Chua was disqualified.

Earlier on Friday, Malaysia's High Court judge Justice Nordin Hassan dismissed Mr Chua's suit to initiate legal proceedings against the Election Commission (EC) to reverse the rejection of his nomination to contest in next week's election.

 

He made the ruling after allowing preliminary objections raised by the Attorney-General's Chambers.

Justice Nordin dismissed Chua's suit on grounds that the court has no jurisdiction on the validity of returning officer's decision to reject the nomination.

He said Chua should file his suit by way of an election petition.

Named as the respondents in this suit are the returning officer Anwar Md Zain and the EC.

In his originating summons filed on Monday, Chua has sought to reverse the rejection of his nomination last Saturday.

He also sought a declaration that he is entitled to contest and be nominated for the Batu parliamentary seat.

Chua was disqualified from defending his seat by returning officer Anwar, who said that the RM2,000 (S$675) fine imposed on the politician in March this year for insulting a police officer made him ineligible to contest.

Malaysian law disqualifies an MP from public office if he is sentenced to imprisonment for a term of not less than one year or is fined not less than RM2,000.

Chua, whose real name is Chua Tian Chiang, is vice president of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and has held the Batu seat for two terms since 2008.