Bersih, Azmin question CJ's directive to hasten redelineation hearings

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Electoral reform group Bersih claims that Chief Justice Md Raus Sharif has issued a directive for the two cases challenging the Election Commission's (EC) redelineation exercise to be expedited.

Bersih said this came to light during the case managements for the challenges in Selangor and Malacca, where lawyers were faced with uncompromising dates.

Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali said the state government, which brought the challenge against the EC, was "shocked by the sudden rush and irregular manner" in which the dates were hastened.

"Our lawyers were told that this was being done on the direct instruction of the chief justice.

"As this is a matter of immense public interest touching on the constitutional voting rights of citizens, it is incumbent on the Selangor government, as a litigant, to seek an explanation for this puzzling change of circumstances," Azmin said in a statement today.

In the case of the challenge brought by the Selangor government, the case management was fixed on July 6.

The Bersih steering committee, in a separate statement, said the case management date was then abruptly brought forward to today (June 9).

"At the case management, the lawyers were informed that the chief justice has directed for the trial to be fixed on 20 June 2017 – giving the lawyers less than five days to file their written submission and to be at the hearing within a week prior to Hari Raya," the Bersih steering committee said in a statement...

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