PKR vice-president Tian Chua, who could not contest in the recently concluded 14th general election, will make a representation to the Attorney-General's Chambers on whether he qualifies to stand for future elections.
The former Batu MP’s nomination papers were rejected by the returning officer on April 28 due to the RM2,000 fine imposed on him in a 2017 court case.
His counsel, Gurdial Singh Nijar, informed the Court of Appeal’s three-man panel today that he would be writing to the new attorney-general Tommy Thomas for clarification on whether an MP could be disqualified from contesting the election after being fined RM2,000 under Article 28 (1)(e) of the Federal Constitution.
Following this, Gurdial requested for an adjournment of Tian Chua's appeal hearing over his disqualification pending the representation.
Senior federal counsel Amarjeet Singh, representing the RO Anwar Mohd Zain and the Election Commission, did not object.
Justice Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim, who led the panel, granted the adjournment.
He also said that Tian Chua’s application to amend his originating summons and his appeal would be dealt with by the Court of Appeal panel on the next date.
The other two judges were P Nalini and Mary Lim Thiam Suan.
On May 4, the Kuala Lumpur High Court dismissed Tian Chua’s legal action to challenge the EC’s decision to disqualify him from contesting the Batu parliamentary seat in GE14, prompting him to lodge an appeal to the Court of Appeal.
High Court judge Nordin Hassan held the court did not have the jurisdiction to hear the matter or to determine the validity of the RO’s decision in rejecting Tian Chua’s nomination papers.
He had allowed the EC’s preliminary objection, and found that Tian Chua’s matter was an election dispute, and that he should file by way of an election petition and not by an originating summons.
The RO rejected Tian Chua’s nomination papers on the basis of the RM2,000 fine imposed on him by the Shah Alam High Court on March 2, which allowed his appeal against the sentence for insulting the modesty of a police officer.
Tian Chua was initially fined RM3,000 by the Petaling Jaya Sessions Court in 2014 for the offence.
Outside the court, Gurdial told reporters that there were three court decisions including a Federal Court decision which stated that a person was still qualified to contest the election if the person was fined RM2,000.