KOTA KINABALU: The number of state constituencies in Sabah will be increased from 60 to 73 in the next elections.
The state assembly has passed a bill which will see the seats being increased to 73 allowing the Election Commission to create and decide on where the new seats are, which will then meet the parliament’s approval.
The bill was passed with 55 votes in favour of the proposal at the state assembly seating here Tuesday.
Earlier in the seating, Special Tasks Minister Datuk Teo Chee Kang (pic) said the amendment was timely as according to the constitution, the Election Commission has the right to restudy, reanalyse or change and add seats every eight years.
During the debate, various state ministers and assemblymen expressed the need to have a fair distribution of seats.
Proposals such as to give districts or areas which have never had any additional seats since the federation was formed to be given priority in the distribution of seats were voiced out.
They also urged for the delineation process to be done in a practical manner where boundaries are reachable, according to Sabah’s complex demographic factors.
The people’s welfare and development of the state especially in rural areas should be the main consideration, they said.
The last redelineation exercise for Sabah was in 2003.