Monday, March 03, 2008

Anwar Ibrahim Accuses Government Of Postal Vote Fraud

Malaysia's former deputy prime minister and opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim Sunday accused the government of perpetuating postal vote fraud as citizens prepare to cast their ballots on March 8.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition government, which has led the country since independence, is expected to win the poll but lose more seats amid protests and rising prices.

However, reports of voting irregularities have cast doubt on whether the upcoming polls will be fair.

"(We) are profoundly disappointed, though not surprised, by the latest evidence of postal voting fraud likely to be perpetuated during the upcoming elections," Anwar told AFP.

"The untransparent process of postal votes will result in seats won by opposition candidates being stolen by the ruling coalition in a blatantly fraudulent manner," he added.

Postal voting is presently restricted to military troops, policemen and teachers who are based far away from their constituencies.

Anwar's comments come as his party colleague Ibrahim Yaacob, who is a candidate for a parliamentary seat in the capital, gave reporters the names of postal voters they say were issued with two ballot sheets.

"I was there when the Election Commission (EC) was packing voter kits for postal votes on Saturday and we spotted at least six people with the same identification card number having two ballots each," Yaacob said.

"This is voting fraud as each postal voter should have only one vote," he added.

Electoral reform activists say a number of seats that the opposition would win could be decided by postal votes and that those casting postal votes do not have the freedom to choose the candidate they want.

Activists from the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (BERSIH) say each ballot is also attached to a letter identifying the voter along with the voting slip serial number, so it would be easy to trace who voted for the opposition.

The EC, which maintains the electoral rolls and administers postal voting, could not be reached for comment.

It has repeatedly denied accusations that it is in league with the BN to rig the process so the ruling coalition gets extra votes. (AFP)

***** Postal vote fraud has in the past been said to shore up the fortunes of unpopular ruling party candidates, and the Election Commission is apparently in no hurry to assure the people that such things cannot happen. Merely issuing denials is not very comforting.

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Anonymous Trishul said...

The dirty bastards will sell their mother in order to stay in power!

11:47 AM GMT+8  
Blogger kittykat46 said...

Standard Operating Procedure for Barisan Najis.
Always keep a few spare ballot boxes of "Postal Votes" to be thrown in when the losing margin is thin.

12:48 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous SM said...

The ONLY thing transparent about the EC & the Electoral Process in Malaysia is the NEW Transparent Boxes!!!!!

9:29 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Best way is to counter check the electoral Roll for every name to be tally and etc.
And as the Pas Party elsewhere said the Witnesses at the Counting session of votes must be equiped with video cameras for evident purposes.
Whatever the situation, my lord Allah, the Supreme Being only can help in such a cicumstances. Ameen.

12:03 AM GMT+8  
Blogger Guy in the glass said...

Previously, there have been talk about phantom votes and phantom voters. Personally, I don't think there can be phantom votes as every vote is matched against the electoral list by the polling agents representing both the ruling and opposition parties. It is easy to spot any discrepancy.

However, phantom voters is possible previously. With the indelible ink now, I would think it would not be possible anymore unless we use people who are not registered voters to vote. As this is the first time the ink is being used, correctly implementing it will go a long way in assuring the general public.

What is still not addressed are the postal voters. It would help if we can learn from other countries how this is carried out.


2:57 PM GMT+8  

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