SEREMBAN, April 13 (Bernama) -- Polling opened at 8 am today in the Rantau state by-election.
Fourteen polling centres with 53 polling streams have been set up to enable 20,793 voters to cast their ballots. Eleven voters have sent in their ballots by post.
The polling centres will close at 5.30 pm.
The Rantau state constituency has 20,926 voters comprising 20,804 ordinary voters, four absentee voters and 118 early voters.
The electoral roll comprises 11,615 Malays (55.51 per cent); 3,863 Chinese (18.46 per cent); 5,441 Indians (26 per cent); and seven categorised as others (0.03 per cent).
Ninety-six per cent of the 110 early voters comprising police and military personnel as well as their spouses cast their ballots on Tuesday.
The Election Commission (EC) said 515 of its workers would be on duty today and anticipated a 70 per cent voter turnout for the by-election.
The Meteorological Department has predicted fine weather in the morning but thunderstorms in the late afternoon in a few places in Seremban.
The voters will choose one of the four contestants - Dr S. Streram, 60, of Pakatan Harapan (PH), Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, 63, of Barisan Nasional (BN) and independents R. Malarvizhi, 51, a housewife, and Mohd Nor Yassin, 67, a former lecturer.
Dr Streram is expected to vote at Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (Tamil) Rantau; Mohamad, who is UMNO deputy president, and Malarvizhi at Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (Cina) Chung Hua while Mohd Nor will not vote as he is registered to vote in Gemencheh.
The tallying of votes will be conducted at the Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (C) Bandar Sri Sendayan multipurpose hall.
The Rantau by-election has been necessitated by the Election Court’s declaration of Mohamad’s unopposed victory in the 14th General Election (GE14) null and void.
In GE14, Mohamad was declared the winner of the seat after Dr Streram was prohibited from entering the nomination centre to submit his nomination papers because he did not have a pass issued by the EC.