Postal voting for three by-elections begins Friday

(The Star) – Postal voting for the three by-elections in Batang Ai, Bukit Selambau and Bukit Gantang has begun.

Sharon Ling reporting from Lubok Antu said Friday that 15 police personnel were among the first to cast their votes at the police station to select their candidate for Batang Ai.

State Election Commission director Takun Sunggah said the constituency had 43 registered postal voters comprising police personnel who would cast their votes at their respective places of duty.

"Some are in Betong, Miri, Engkilili and Peninsula Malaysia, so that is where they will cast their votes," he said when supervising the voting process at the Lubok Antu police station.

Takun said the EC would begin sending ballot boxes to the 25 polling stations in Batang Ai on Monday. Polling is set for Tuesday.

He said the furthest polling stations were at Nanga Uyau in the Bilararap polling district and SK Ulu Engkari in the Engkari district.

"It takes about four hours by boat to get there from here," he said, adding that polling would close at 11am at both stations so that election workers could return to the polling centre at the sports complex here before evening.

There are 198 registered voters in Bilararap and 98 in Engkari, out of a total 8,006 voters in the constituency.

Takun also said the by-election result was expected to be known by 8.30pm on Tuesday as most of the polling stations would close before 5pm.

The commission will deploy 201 election workers, 20 longboats and 52 four-wheel drive vehicles for the by-election, which is seeing a straight fight between Barisan Nasional's Malcom Mussen Lamoh and PKR's Jawah Gerang.