KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 23 — Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today said Haslihelmy DM Zulhasli has been sacked as a party member for running as an independent in the Pelangai by-election in Pahang.
Haslihelmy had filed his nomination papers to be a candidate in the Pahang state seat earlier this morning, which pits him against the official Barisan Nasional (BN) hopeful Datuk Amizar Abu Adam who is from Umno, and Kasim Samat of Perikatan Nasional.
“He is contesting as an independent candidate, his membership in Umno was automatically revoked today,” Zahid was quoted by The Star as telling reporters at the nomination centre in Bentong.
Yesterday, the New Straits Times reported Haslihelmy saying he was prepared to face the consequences of his action from Umno if he went ahead to contest as an independent.
Polling day for the Pelangai state by-election on October 7 will see a three-cornered battle between Haslihelmy, Datuk Amizar Abu Adam of Barisan Nasional and returnee Kasim Samat of Perikatan Nasional.
Campaigning for the Pelangai by-election officially kicks off today with polling on October 7.
Pelangai is the first by-election in Pahang after its state election, which was held concurrently with the 15th general election on November 19 last year.
It was called following the death of its incumbent Datuk Seri Johari Harun, 53, from Umno in an air crash in Shah Alam, Selangor on August 17.
In GE15, Johari who represented BN, won with a 4,048-vote majority to defeat Kasim (PN), Ahmed Wafiuddin of Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Pejuang candidate Isa Ahmad.
The composition of Pahang state assembly seats after GE15 saw BN and PN each having 17 seats while PH won eight seats.
The Pahang government was formed after BN and PH teamed up at the state level, to reflect the cooperation at the federal level.