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Permatang Pauh: Nomination Aug 16 Polling Aug 26

The Election Commission today announced August 16 as nomination day and August 26 as polling day for the Permatang Pauh parliamentary constituency by-election.

SPRThree-term MP Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail quit the seat last week to give her husband Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim an opportunity to enter Parliament as sodomy charges loom.

Anwar, who is the de facto leader of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition comprising his Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), Democratic Action Party (DAP) and Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (Pas), is expected to win easily in the seat which is also his hometown.

The former deputy prime minister had held the seat since 1982 until his conviction in 1999 for corruption.

He was unable to run in the March 8 elections due to a mandatory five-year restriction from political office after his release in 2004.

The Pakatan Rakyat won and unprecedented and historic five states and 82 seats in parliament, denying the Barisan Nasional its customary two-thirds majority in the parliament. The opposition victory also made Wan Azizah create history by being the first woman Parliamentary Opposition Leader. She said she will remain as PKR president despite resigning from parliament.

The commission added it would use the latest electoral roll — last updated July 31, 2008 — for the by-election. Permatang Pauh has a total of 58,459 voters out of which 490 are postal voters with a racial breakdown of 69.4% Malays, 24.5% Chinese, 6% Indians and 0.1% Others. During the 12th General Election, Wan Azizah won by a majority of 13,388.

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