Days after Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) vice-president Tian Chua was disqualified from defending his parliamentary seat by the Election Committee (EC), he took the case to the High Court to clear the air.
Chua was disqualified from contesting Malaysia’s 14th General Election after the EC rejected his nomination form last Saturday (April 28) while he prepared to retain his current parliamentary seat in Batu.
The reason for his disqualification?
A RM$2,000 ($507) fine imposed in a 2017 court case in relation to his conviction for verbally abusing a police officer four years ago.
Chua, whose real name is Chua Tian Chang, had fought this verdict, appearing in court to file a suit to reverse the rejection.
The suit, filed on Wednesday, named election returning officer Anwar Md Zain and the EC as respondents. It was Anwar who rejected Chua’s nomination.
Chua has held the Batu parliamentary seat since 2008 and sought a declaration that he is qualified to contest the seat at the polls under Article 48(1)(e) of the Federal Constitution.
The decision to disqualify Chua was made according to Section 7(1)(c) of the Elections (Conduct of Elections) Regulations 1981, read together with Article 48(1)(e).
High Court (Appellate and Special Powers) judge Justice Nordin Hassan, who fixed the date, will decide the eligibility of Chua’s case.
Chua’s lawyer, Gurdial Singh Nijhar, has said that Chua just wants his “status to be cleared“, reported malaysiakini.
“We have the right to argue this case and the matter can be heard on its merits,” he added.
Tian Chua has made the issue very public, using his Facebook page not only to update his followers on the case, but to broadcast his speech live to his supporters outside the High Court on Thursday.