A total of 237 party flags were removed by the authorities since campaigning for the Kuala Terengganu by-election began on Tuesday, said Terengganu police chief Datuk Mohd Shukri Dahlan.

He said election monitoring teams removed 107 flags, 33 belonging to Umno/Barisan Nasional (BN) and 71 of PAS, during their rounds yesterday.

Together with 130 flags that had been removed earlier, it brought the total (flags removed) to 237 to date, he told a press conference here today.

He said the reasons for their removal were that they were affecting traffic flow or were flown at prohibited places and that apart from this, 10 banners strung up at various locations in this city were also confiscated for not adhering to the rules.

Mohd Shukri also said police had issued 32 permits for ceramah (political rallies) so far, with 22 issued to PAS and 10 to the BN while eight applications from Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) were rejected.

“PKR’s applications were rejected because parties not involved in the election are barred from campaigning,” he said.

Polling is on Jan 17 in the Kuala Terengganu by-election, necessitated by the death of Member of Parliament Datuk Razali Ismail, who was deputy education minister, on Nov 28 last year.

The by-election is a three-cornered fight among former deputy home minister Datuk Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh of the BN, Wakaf Mempelam state assemblyman Mohd Abdul Wahid Endut of PAS and independent candidate Azharudin Mamat alias Adam.