Tuesday 1 May 2007

How Democracy Gets Cheated at Election Time in Malaysia

"The independence and competence of the Election Commission, and its deplorable bias to the RULING political parties in government, MUST be questioned by every voting Malaysian, for the persistent and consistent replay of irregularities in the country's elections over the years."
-'Malaysian Unplug'
Related articles:

From Brunei Times: Read here for more

"... Keadilan rejected the poll results after alleging fraud and calling the bitterly fought by-election an insult to democracy."This is not a defeat for our party. This is an insult to our democratic system," Keadilan said in a statement.

Keadilan said it "found irregularities and evidence of fraud, intimidation, bribery and cheating by Barisan Nasional," on polling day, adding that the high voter turnout was "extremely suspect".

It said the use of police and government machinery had created an atmosphere of fear in the semi-rural constituency...."
From Malaysiakini, Read here for more

"...Yang Razali Kassim, of the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Singapore's Nanyang Technological University said the high voter turnout was a key factor that turned the tide in favour of the ruling coalition. "It is a setback for Anwar but while he may be down, he's definitely not out yet. It's too soon to write him off at this point," he said.

Of the nine polling districts, Malay-majority Bukit Badong scored the HIGHEST (turnout) with 90.10%. Another five saw over 80% turnout.

The LOWEST turnout is in Indian-majority Tuan Mee, 79.9%, Chinese-majority Pekan Ijok, 75.1% and Chinese-majority Batang Bestari Selatan 68.6%.

From Malaysiakini-Read Here


"...There were 142 unreturned ballots, representing nearly 30 percent of the total 500 ballot papers issued in the fourth voting stream in Pekan Berjuntai Bestari Utara. [Click here for the official breakdown according to voting streams] . "

According to Parti Keadilan Rakyat vice-president R Sivarasa , the single unreturned ballot in Jaya Setia could be an isolated incident but not the rest.

“Since it is the first voting stream, (the reason) can be quite easily understood as an elderly voter may have dropped the ballot paper.

But 142 unreturned ballot papers in another voting stream is just strange.

The intention to take the ballot papers out without marking them suggests that money could have been offered for the ballot papers."

Serious Irregularities at the Ijok By-Election

Other alleged irregularities and discrepancies that have been recorded include:

1) Discrepancy on the polling result in Pekan Ijok

Before the official announcement that BN had won the by-election was made at 8.45pm, returning officer Haris Kasim read out the results from each voting stream.

According to him, PKR polled 135, 218 and 271 votes respectively in the three voting streams in Pekan Ijok while BN received 146, 206 and 253.

This led to PKR winning the Chinese-majority Pekan Ijok with 624 votes as opposed to BN which received 605 votes.

However, the election results distributed by EC to the media an hour later saw the votes received by PKR in the third voting stream in Pekan Ijok reduced by 40 - from 271 to 231. No explanation was given. [Click here for the official results]

Due to the change, PKR’s votes were reduced to 584 and BN won Pekan Ijok.

2) Ballot papers collected by unknown individuals

Fifty-six-year-old voter Hiew Yoke Chau told malaysiakini that he was informed by BN and PKR polling agents that his ballot paper was collected by someone else when he came to vote at about 2pm in Pekan Ijok.

An EC officer finally allowed him to vote an hour later after he had signed a letter of oath declaring that he had not cast his ballot.

According to PKR, there were two other similar cases in Pekan Ijok.

3) Ballot paper for sale

It has been suggested that there were attempts to ‘buy’ ballot papers. It allegedly starts with a voter sneaking out a ballot paper and giving it to an agent, who then marks the political party of choice on the paper.

This marked paper is then given to another voter who will drop it in the marked ballot box and smuggled out his blank ballot paper. This will be given the agent.

The process is repeated throughout the polling day.

The voters could allegedly collect money from the ‘buyer’ upon producing the unmarked ballot paper.

4) Voters' names removed from electoral roll

There were unconfirmed number of cases where voters had complained of their names having been removed from the electoral roll despite having voted in the same polling district previously and not changing their address.

Malaysiakini received six such complaints from Kampung Ijok, Simpang Ijok and Bukit Badong.

5) Phantom voters

PKR claimed that at least ‘five confirmed dead people’ had cast their votes on polling day.

Apart from this, the opposition party also raised questions over ‘suspicious looking’ voters, such as a voter who looked like a Pakistani who cast his ballot in Kampung Ijok. There were also similar cases in Jaya Setia.

PKR also stopped two buses ferrying some 80 passengers, mostly Malay women, on polling day after receiving information that the occupants allegedly possessed two identity cards and were phantom voters imported from elsewhere.

Umno Youth deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin claimed that the group consisted of BN supporters from Perlis.

PKR also claimed that there were two other buses suspected of ferrying phantom voters.


  • From Sigma's Simulacrum's Reality
    1. The Chinese like to say that they are helpless when it comes to politics and have to tolerate BN.

    Then how do you explain Machap? Chinese-majority seat, won by an increased majority by MCA/BN lately despite UMNO’s recent antics. Ijok? Majority of them still backed BN. Better yet, how do you explain why Penang is still Gerakan-lead? Or why MCA MPs still outnumber DAP and PKR MPs by a ratio of 3:1?

    2. Why do the Indians continue to give the majority of their support to MIC?

    What have MIC done for them? 50 years on and they still remain the poorest ethnic group in Malaysia. And is it just me or does Mr Samy Vellu sound like a very arrogant and out-of-touch leader in a lot of his press statements?

    3. Where were the moderate Malays in Ijok?

    They had the chance to let a non-UMNO but also non-PAS party represent them but they rejected it.

    BN’s win over PKR in Ijok sends out a lot of bad signs.

    It says (like it or not) that the people are still more comfortable with a multiracial coalition of monoracial parties instead of multiracial parties.

    It says that even if BN puts an old shoe as its candidate in elections, it would still win over a quality Opposition candidate.
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