Malaysian Indian party elects new chief

Monday, June 14, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR - A party espousing the cause of ethnic Indians in Malaysia has elected new office bearers, ending the uncertainty following the election of its last chief being held invalid by the Registrar of Societies in 2008.

M. Sambanthan was elected Indian Progressive Front (IPF) president. He polled 326 votes to defeat his nearest rival M. Thirumugam who received 216 votes.

Sambanthan is the third president after its founder late M.G. Pandithan and his wife Jeyashree Pandithan.

Jayashree’s elevation was endorsed by Pandithan before he died in 2007, but was challenged and later held invalid, leaving the party without a formal leadership.

The IPF, also known as the All Malaysian Indian Progressive Front, was formed as a splinter of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) by Pandithan, who fell out with MIC’s chief S. Samy Vellu.

The IPF supports ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN) but is not its member.

The results were announced Sunday after BN secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor opened the party’s general assembly.

Sambanthan’s running mate, M. George, polled 414 votes to win the deputy president’s post.

The five elected vice-presidents are Kathir Maidin, K. Naduchera­lathan, S. Vasu, K. Elumalai and G. Panneerselvam.

The election is expected to resolve the crisis in the IPF, The Star said Tuesday.

Filed under: Politics

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