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Malaysia to hold general election on Nov 19

Malaysia to hold general election on Nov 19

KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia will hold its next general election on Nov 19, the Election Commission announced on Thursday.

The ccommission said candidate nominations will take place on Nov 5, providing for a 14-day campaigning period.

Caretaker Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced the dissolution of Parliament on Oct 10 with the consent of the country’s King, Sultan Abdullah Ahmad Shah. A general election must be held within 60 days of Parliament’s dissolution.

Datuk Seri Ismail on Thursday said that the 14-day campaign period announced by the commission was sufficient.

“There were times when the period was even shorter,” he reportedly said after launching an entrepreneurship carnival in Selangor. For the 2018 election, the campaigning period was 11 days.

More than 20 million Malaysians are expected to vote for a new government, following more than two years of political turmoil that led to a snap election.

Concerns had been raised that the polls are being held close to Malaysia’s annual monsoon season, which usually begins in mid-November and brings intense rain and flooding.

All 222 parliamentary seats will be up for grabs during the general election, along with the state legislative seats of Pahang, Perlis and Perak. Another state seat in Sabah – Bugaya – will also face a midterm election on the same day after a by-election there was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Election Commission also revealed that the cost of holding the election will be double that of the last general election.

“This election needs an allocation of RM1.01 billion (S$302 million),” commission chairman Abdul Ghani Salleh told reporters. The 2018 polls cost only an estimated RM500 million.

Early voting for security personnel, such as the army and police, will take place on Nov 15.

Postal voting, which is available to members of the media, election officers, civil security forces, agencies and Malaysians residing abroad, is now open for application. The deadline for applications for Malaysians living abroad is Oct 23, for agencies Oct 26 and for the rest on Nov 2.

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