DAP rep can still challenge sacking in court, Sarawak Speaker says

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 13 — DAP’s Dr Ting Tiong Choon can challenge the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly’s move to disqualify him as Pujut assemblyman, its Speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar was reported saying.

According to Asfia, this means whether or not a by-election is to be held in the now-vacant seat will depend on Dr Ting’s next course of action: whether he wants to take the matter to court.

“Let’s see what course of action he will take following the DUN’s decision to disqualify him,” The Borneo Post quoted Asfia saying, using the Malay initials for the state assembly.

Yesterday the Sarawak assembly voted to disqualify Dr Ting after a motion to strip his membership was tabled by state minister Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh.

In the motion, the state international trade and e-commerce minister said Dr Ting is no longer qualified, claiming he had acquired an Australian citizenship, registered as a voter there, and pledged allegiance to a country outside the federation of Malaysia.

But Borneo Post reported that Asfia had asked for some time to study the legal details before he could comment on the decision.

He said he will issue a formal statement next week.

In June last year, Dr Ting had insisted that he does not hold dual Malaysian-Australian citizenship as alleged by his Barisan Nasional (BN) electoral rival in the state polls.

Pujut is one of the three state constituencies under the Miri parliamentary constituency. In the May 7 state election, Ting took Pujut with a majority of 1,759 votes in a four-cornered contest involving DAP, BN, PAS and an independent candidate.

Tabling the motion, Wong said Dr Ting had acquired the Australian citizenship on January 20, 2010, but never declared to the Election Commission of his citizenship status.

Source: Malay Mail

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