By Team Malaysiakini

EC reports record 80pct turnout of voters

POLLING DAY - LIVE REPORTS

7.20pm: Human Rights Watch Asia division deputy director Phil Robertson says the authorities should be vigilant against post election violence and honour the people’s right to peaceful assembly.

NONE“Malaysian voters reaffirmed their commitment to democracy and civic participation with an amazing 80 percent turn-out in a day of peaceful voting, and now it is the turn of the political parties to not disappoint them. 

“Political parties and government authorities need to be vigilant against any who might use violence in this sensitive post-poll period while also recognising and people’s basic human rights to peacefully assembly and make their views known in this historic day for Malaysia," he said in a statement.

5.50pm: About 80 percent of 12,992,661 voters turned out for the 13th general election, says the EC.

This is the highest in Malaysian electoral history, beating the 78.9 percent recorded in 1964.

NONEEC deputy chairperson Wan Ahmad Wan Omar (left) told Bernama that most of the 8,245 polling centres, which had opened at 8 am, closed at 5 pm as scheduled.

Two polling centres in the Tungku state constituency and one in the Lahad Datu constituency, in Sabah, closed at 3 pm as scheduled.

He said the counting of votes began at 5.30pm and the tallying will be done after that.

PKR's Elizabeth Wong tweets that some voting stations charted turnouts of 85 percent and above for the Bukit Lanjan state seat and Subang parliamentary seat - with one recording 90 percent.

NONE5.30pm: Malaysiakini is barred from entering Umno headquarters in Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), although no specific reasons are given for the decision.

Umno communications team informs the journalist that the portal will not be allowed into the building, before he was ushered to exit the building by auxiliary police volunteer unit (Rela) officers.

5.30pm: PKR's Lembah Pantai campaign office has informed the party that all its counting agents at SM Seri Pantai have been told to leave the premises temporarily.

The EC gave the order after voting closed, because its staff 'need to rest'.

The 15 counting agents there have refused to leave, on the ground that they have a right to observe all parts of the voting process especially the whereabouts of the ballots at all times.

PKR has urged the EC to advise its officers to comply with the rules and regulations governing elections.

NONE5pm: Sg Besi, Kuala Lumpur - Inspector-General of Police Ismail Omar (left) says the helicopter in which caretaker Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein and several others were, fell on its side at the Royal Malaysian Air Force base.

The incident occurred when the chopper was landing, due to strong winds.

However, Hishammuddin, the Sembrong parliamentary candidate was reported to be unhurt. He was returning after voting in Johor.

5pm: Voting has ended officially, although those still within polling centres may cast their vote before leaving. Counting is expected to start at 5.30pm, and the EC anticipates the first results to be announced about 7pm.

4.44pm: Segamat, Johor - A polling station at the Jementah Multipurpose Hall, which contained a single stream, has lost power.

"Our people are standing guard. We hope that the ballots can be counted by 6pm or 7pm ... or something could happen when it is dark," says DAP's Jementah state seat candidate Tan Chen Choon when contacted.

4pm: Air Putih, Penang - Three people have been reported injured after a scuffle broke out between a group wearing 1Malaysia t-shirts and members of the public at the SRJK(C) Kong Min polling centre earlier this afternoon.

NONEAccording to eyewitnesses, the 1Malaysia group had challenged some people to a fight.

The police have detained a suspect.

Several Federal Reserve Unit personnel were deployed to the scene to control the angry crowd.

The police van that later took the suspect away was kicked by angry DAP supporters venting their frustration.

Caretaker Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, who arrived about 3pm, has called for calm.

Lim is the incumbent and candidate in the Air Putih state seat which falls under the Bukit Bendera parliament constituency.

4pm: Air Putih, Penang - DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng visits a polling station in SJK(C) Sin Kang which had earlier been allegedly disrupted by the same 1Malaysia group.

He showed a few video clips recorded by a witness to reporters.

NONELim condemned political violence and money politics that have  targeted his constituency.

"I want to tell BN, if you want to do (topple me), this is not the right way. Since the election campaign is over, why not let the people decide?

"The (BN) should bear full responsibility for the incident. I can feel the anger of the residents who have been victimised by those outsiders. I don't know what they will do next, but it seems that they want to win at all costs."

3.40pm: Star Online quotes EC chief Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof as expressing the hope that the turnout will be better than in 2008, which was about 75 percent.

"If we can get a turnout of 80 percent or higher, it would be among the highest in the world," he reportedly said.

Contrary to the Bernama report earlier, also citing the EC, Kelantan leads the way with a turnout of 62.02 percent as at noon.

It is followed by Kedah (61.88%), Terengganu (60.9%), Johor (60.01%), Perlis (59.27%), Penang (59.04%), Pahang (59.02%), Selangor (58.9%), Negri Sembilan (58.35%), Sarawak (58.26%), Perak (58.08%) Sabah (57.1%), Putrajaya (55.82%), Malacca (55.67%) and Labuan (45.82%).

3.30pm: Segamat, Johor: PKR claims that its agent was told to leave a polling station in Felda Palong Timur after discovering that voting was being conducted in a disorderly manner there.

"Our officer was told that his duty was done there and he should leave," says campaign worker Victor Chua.

"We were informed that the EC officers there did not print out the electoral roll and only recorded voter's information from the computer on a piece of paper with the 1Malaysia logo."

The polling station is Palong Timur 140/01/03 at SK Palong Timur 1.

PKR is mobilising its people to put pressure on the polling station which is 40km from town, deep within an oil palm plantation.

3.15pm: Alor Setar, Kedah - Unlike other polling centres here, Chinese voters outnumbered the others in the morning hours at SRJK (C) Keat Hwa.

The gloomy weather and light drizzle has not deterred voters from lining up to vote.

A graduate student from Universiti Malaya in Kuala Lumpur expressed her wish for federal power to change hands.

"I want a change from BN to Pakatan Rakyat. I was to abolish PTPTN. Support Pakatan, I want free education," says the first-time voter who did not wish to be identified.

She says 90 percent of her friends on campus have returned home to vote.

3pm: Air Putih, Penang - Caretaker Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng's press secretary Cheong Yin Fan reports that a member of the public has "caught" a Bangladeshi coming to vote at the SRJK(C) polling centre in Air Putih.

NONEThe voter, JJ Choo, says he felt there was something suspicious about another voter, who later was discovered as a Bangladeshi with a Malaysian identity card.

Choo went to the EC website and tried to find his name, which was actually registered under another polling centre - Chung Ling High School, in the Air Itam state seat.

He immediately alerted the DAP volunteers on the ground, who contacted the DAP candidate for Air Itam Wong Hon Wai.

However, nothing could be done as the person holds a valid IC.

3pm: Penang - The DAP's Tanjong candidate Ng Wei Aik has lodged a report with the EC because some ballot papers have not been stamped.

Ng, who is the Penang DAP secretary, said complaints were received from three locations or polling centres:

NONE- SJK(T)) Jalan Sungai (under the Jelutong parliament constituency)

- SJK(C) kong Min Cawangan Kedua (under the Bukit Gelugor constituency); and

- SK Taman Sejahtera under the Bukit Mertajam constituency.

Penang EC deputy director Mohd Faiz Syazwan Zainal Abidin says some ballot papers were not stamped due to the "negligence" of some officers.

"Whether stamped or not, we will accept the papers as it is according to the EC regulations," he says.

3pm: Kota Damansara, Selangor - Despite the heavy downpour, voters are resolutely making their way to polling centres.

With less then two hours before polls close, endless shouts of "Ubah" (Change) and "BN" can be heard from supporters of Pakatan and BN rspectively, who are sheltering under umbrellas. Each side is determined to outdo the other in cheering.

2.47pm: Tamparuli, Sabah - A woman dressed in what looks like a security guard's uniform walks out of a polling room at SK Pekan Tamparuli, with an unmarked ballot paper.

When stopped by polling agents and police officers, she says: "Oh, I need to fill this in, too? I didn't know!"

EC officers allow her back in to mark the ballot even though her finger has been marked with indelible ink.

It appears that she had cast her ballot for the parliamentary seat, and not the state seat.

2pm: Penang, Air Putih - A scuffle has reportedly erupted at the SRJK(C) polling centre in Air Putih, reportedly involving individuals wearing the 1Malaysia blue t-shirts.

Incumbent and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, who is defending the state seat, is rushing to the venue, from a visit to the parliamentary constituency in Bagan on the mainland.

Up to now, 67.51 percent or 569,184 voters - of 846,232  on the electoral roll - have voted.

2pm: A team of 18 foreign observers has been watching the voting process at various centres around Kuala Lumpur since this morning, reports Bernama.

Twelve of them - from Cambodia and Thailand - were accompanied by EC secretary Kamaruddin Mohamed Baria.

Observers from Indonesia, Myanmar and the Asean secretariat are also observing the 13th general election on the EC's invitation.

Those met at the polling centre at SMK Seri Gombak described the process as "accountable", also praising such features as the use of indelible ink and the vetting of voters prior to the ballots being marked.

Later today, they will be taken to the counting centre in Putrajaya.

The EC has also endorsed 1,200 local observers from 17 NGOs.

2pm: St Paul Institution, Seremban - The EC officer stationed here says the number of voters has dropped off. Some had to line up for up to two hours this morning. 

1:40pm: Segamat, Johor - The stand-off between Chua and the Umno woman continues at SK Bukit Hampar.

Chua: I saw voters passing you their identity cards because they thought you are an Election Commission officer.

Woman: I'm just helping, I didn't do it, it's someone from my (party) division that did it.

NONEChua: I saw you doing it with my own eyes

Woman: Yes, but that is the division's. That person was the one checking, he has left.

The police arrived five minutes and concurred that it was an offence under the Election Offences Act.

"We will investigate once a police report is lodged. By right, those who allowed inside are only those with EC passes.

"For now we consider the matter resolved. We have asked her to leave and taken her details.

"It's up to your side to make a report. Our priority today is to ensure there is no disturbance here," said a police officer named Nasyim.

The woman later denied that the name list belongs to her, and the police urged her to also make her own police report. 

NONE1.30pm: Citing multiple reports nationwide of long delays after voters were forced to do a manual search of their voting stream, PKR has urged the EC not to delay the process with bureaucracy.

"Voters who already know which voting room (saluran) they are in, usually (by) searching the EC website beforehand, should be allowed to proceed to their respective voting rooms," says the party in a statement.

1.33pm: Malaysians for Beng Hock coordinator Ng Yap Hwa who cast his vote at SK Sri Tangkak, at 11am, has complained that EC officers demanded that he remove a yellow ribbon with a Bersih logo worn on his hand.

This was despite him arguing that only political party symbols and colours are not allowed. He intends to lodge a complaint.

1.30pm: Johor - It has been raining heavily in parts of Johor, from Kulai to Batu Pahat along the North-South highway.

Several traffic accidents have occurred in both directions between the Machap and Ayer Hitam exits, causing a massive traffic jam.

1pm: About 58.99 percent of voters had voted nationwide by noon, at 8,245 polling centres. A total of 12,992,661 voters are eligible to vote, the EC has told Bernama.

NONESelangor had recorded a 58.95 percent turnout or 1.2 million voters up to 1pm.

In Negri Sembilan, the turnout was 58.3 percent of the 555,982 voters up to the same hour.

Malacca, as at noon, recorded 40 percent of 424,519 voters.

In Perak, 30 percent of the 1.36 million voters had voted up to 11am, while the turnout in Pahang stood at 29.44 percent of the total of 736,111 voters.

In Kelantan, it was 13.19 percent of the 918,573 voters up to 11.30am.

In interior areas of Sabah, such as Kampung Mangkasulap, Beluran, as well as in Penampang dan Kudat, polling centres closed at 11am.

1pm: Seremban - It is drizzling in Labu and Seremban 2, but it is not expected to affect voting.

12.15 pm: Seremban - A check of polling centres reveals that many voters have turned out already, with the weather being kind up to now. However, roads are congested around the town.

12.01pm: Kota Kinabalu, Sabah - The scorching sun is apparently keeping voters away from the polling centres around the capital city.

Compared to this morning, queues are hardly seen, except for voting streams 3 and 4 assigned to younger voters.

NONE"We're hoping they'll come out when it gets cooler," one SAPP polling agent says at the Maktab Sabah polling centre in Luyang.

SAPPP estimates that about a quarter of the total voters have turned up at the polling centre.

The heat is also taking its toll on election agents who are taking cover in the shade.

"It's so hot I've had to remove my head scarf!" an Umno polling agent lamented at SMK Sanzac, in the state seat of Tanjong Aru - where PAS candidate Hamid Ismail is attempting to break the party's "extremist" image.

NONEHowever, in Api-api, closest to the city centre, a 100m-long line of voters has formed outside the SJK (C) Chung Hwa Kampung Air. The line continues into the school compound.

A man who is standing midway in the queue says he has been lining up for 30 minutes.

Api-api is contested by PKR's Christina Liew, BN's Yee Moh Chai and three others.

Liew, who lost to Yee by less than 200 votes in 2008, has continuously urged supporters to come out to vote as an additional 4,000 names have been added to the roll.

Noon: Penang - Given the number of complaints about the 'negligence' of polling clerks in stamping ballot papers, Penang DAP secretary Ng Wei Aik will lodge a formal complaint with the state EC director at 3pm today.

NONENoon: Air Putih, Penang - Despite all the allegations of vote-buying and that voters have abandoned him, caretaker Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has been received warmly when making the rounds of Air Putih.

Lim, the DAP secretary-general, is defending the state seat.

Many rushed to greet him and shake his hands, wishing him "Good luck and all the best".

Sporting a white shirt, which is soaked with sweat, Lim assisted the disabled to enter the voting centre at the SRJK (C) Kong Min in Air Itam.

11.50am: Kulai, Johor - Chai Siew Pin, 42, a voter in the Kulai parliamentary seat and Bukit Batu state seat, has found that someone has voted in her name.

She found this out when she arrived at the polling station at SJK(C) Batu about 10am.

"I'm waiting for the agents of political parties to help me. I will fight for my rights," she says.

Chai was later issued a Borang 10A by the EC officer who still did not allow her to vote.

When contacted at 3.10pm, she said: "I still cannot vote. I'm now making police report at Ayer Bemban police station."

"It is totally unacceptable that a simple basic rule of election is not understood by the workers and even the presiding officer of the polling centre."

11.50am: Penang, Pantai Jerejak - PKR's Bayan Baru candidate Sim Tze Tzin says he had received several complaints from voters in Pantai Jerejak that their ballot paper was stained with indelible ink.

"When I checked with the Returning Officer, I was told that if it stains the back of the paper, it is still okay. But if it stains the front where voting is done, then it would be considered as spoilt vote," he says.

Sim, the Pantai Jerejak incumbent, says other issues have cropped up - for example, ballot papers being placed in the wrong box

"The problem has been resolved after talking to the officers concerned," he adds.

11.37am: Segamat, Johor - PKR candidate Chua Jui Meng's election agent says two voters have objected to discrepancies in Chua's name on the ballot paper.

"The main polling station showed us the ballot paper, which states 'Datuk Chua Jui Meng'," says Victor Chu.

"But we are also getting reports that other ballot papers have printed his name as Dr Chua Jui Meng."

A complaint has been lodged with the Returning Officer, as a precaution.

11.30pm: Segamat, Johor - An argument has broken out at SK Bukit Hampar after PKR's Segamat candidate Chua Jui Meng surveyed the polling station and found an Umno member ticking off a name list of those who have voted.

NONEWhen confronted, the middle-age woman replied: "I'm just sitting here helping out my Umno branch for record."

Chua rebutted: "Umno has no power to check. You cannot do this, it is against the law, you have no authorisation."

The police officer guarding the station said he was unaware that the woman was tracking voters and thought she was only sitting there.

The woman has called her Umno bosses, while the police have also been called in and are on their way.

11.23am: Alor Setar, Kedah - Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his wife Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali are mobbed by hundreds as they arrive to cast their votes at Sekolah Kebagsaan Titi Gajah, according to the New Straits Times.

They are among 29,056 voters in the Anak Bukit state seat, under the Kuala Kedah parliamentary constituency. 

11am: Bagan constituency, Penang - At the SRK Sungai Nyior, Bagan Dalam, DAP election agent Sim Phoi Yong complains that a voter lost his right to vote because an EC officer marked his finger with indelible ink and then told him that he is not registered as a voter at that station.

"We have reported the case to the Returning Officer, who has taken note of this," says Sim.

11am: Seri Delima constituency, Penang - Two pondok panas - one set up by BN and the other by DAP - are located a few metres outside the voting centre at SMK Hamid Khan.

An Election Commission supervisor, who declined to be named, says that, as long as the pondoks are not in the school compound, it "should be okay".

NONEWhen met after voting, retiree Kua Chan Peng (left), 57, complained that the voting procedure was messy.

"I had printed out my details from the EC website and, by right, do not need to get the voting slip. I went straight to my stream but they told me, I must have the slip. After I insisted, they let me vote. Some senior citizens may be turned off by this messy procedure."

Retired nurse Jenny Chong,78, says she had to insist on a new ballot paper as the one given to her was "tarnished".

"There was a line drawn on the parliamentary ballot. I debated with the EC representative and finally got a replacement, but I had to wait.

"They told me not to dirty the paper, but I replied that it was already dirtied and that I know how to vote, as I have been doing it since the 1960s."

10.50am: Kedah - Voting is proceeding smoothly in five polling centres in the Ayer Hitam and Kota Siputeh state seats, although the number of voters has increased sizeably since this morning.

NONEPAS' Ayer Hitam candidate Abdul Ghani Ahmad voted at the Ayer Hitam primary school about 8.30am.

At two polling stations, banners have been spotted with a message that voters will reject BN's Ayer Hitam candidate Mukhriz Mahathir.

Another warns Mukhriz and his father Dr Matahir Mohamad not to cause a split in BN Kedah.

10.30am: Mengkibol, Johor - DAP candidate Tan Hon Ping accuses the EC of irregular practices at several polling stations in the state.

For instance, he says a polling clerk at SJK (C)Yun Ming has not stamped the ballot papers  issued to voters, according to observers.

At the polling station in SK Parit Keroma Darat, Muar, the polling clerk is said to have told voters that it is "all right not to stamp" the ballot papers.

At SMK Seri Mersing, a 29-year-old voter has lodged a police report, claiming that his ballot paper was not stamped.

In Mersing, a polling centre has not provided pens or pencils for people to mark their ballot papers.

So they used the indelible ink on their finger to mark the papers.

10.20am: Selayang, Selangor - Although the indelible ink on his finger has 'faded', BN's Selayang parliamentary candidate Donald Lim does not think it is a problem.

NONE"There are two processes in voting - one is the MyKad identification process and the other is to check for ink," he tells reporters after visiting the polling centre in SK Selayang Baru 2.

"It's not easy to bring a fake MyKad ... (Moreover,) both sides have observers to check the name (on the electoral roll)."

Lim had earlier cast his ballot at the Petaling Jaya Selatan constituency.

He remains confident  that Selangor MCA will win half of the seven parliamentary seats and 14 state seats being contested.

"In life we have to aim high ... well, at least this stage, yes (we will win 50 percent)."

10.30am: Beruas, Perak - PAS candidate Dr Khairudin Abd Malek is confident that he can capture Pengkalan Baru for Pakatan Rakyat.

He is banking on young Malay voters who have returned to vote, and have been attending the party's ceramahs.

He also claims that PAS has made a big breakthrough in Malay villages in the constituency

"Although we have some problems reaching the older generation, especially women, they only make up a small percentage of voters. So I think we can make it this time around," he adds.

10am: Port Klang, Selangor - According to a Nanyang Siang Pau SMS alert, some 500 voters are still waiting in the hot sun to vote.

It attributes the delay to 'improper arrangements' at the polling centre in SJK Pandamaran (B).

9.55am, Selangor: PAS' Kota Raja candidate Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud has visited the polling centre at the Impian Sentosa apartments.

She asks voters queuing under the hot sun to be patient. 

9.45am: Pandan, Selangor - PKR's Pandan candidate Rafizi Ramli has arrived to inspect the voting process, also taking the opportunity to greet voters at SK Pandan Indah. Some have taken photos with him.

"A lot of people are suing you, so how?" one voter asked.

Rafizi curtly replied: "They sue, we fight lah."

He says that his polling agents have reported that the voting has gone on smoothly so far.

NONE"The biggest issue are some reports of the indelible ink being washed off, which has caused some anxiety among voters," he says.

Accompanying Rafizi is his wife Afizsa Ashah, who will be voting at this polling station.

However, Rafizi himself won't be voting today, saying that he won't be able to vote in Kemaman, Terengganu, and then rush back to Pandan.

9.45am: Beruas, Perak - The PAS pondok panas at SK Beruas is within 50m of the polling station, although this is not allowed by the Election Commission.

The booth is in front of a house, opposite the main gate of the school.

However, a EC staff member says he is unable to do anything as the party has claimed that the booth is on private land, within the area of the house.

He says the EC can only consider that the 50m starts from the polling centre up to the main gate of the school.

9.43pm: Penampang, Sabah - Some voters have managed to remove the indelible ink on their fingers using grass.

NONEOne voter, Robert, 50, says he tried to remove it out of curiosity.

Malaysiakini saw the ink removed within minutes by rubbing grass on it.

Star Moyog candidate Bernard Lawrence Solibon is also finding that the ink on his fingers has gone off.

"I didn't even put anything on it. The transfer may cause stains on ballot papers and spoil many votes," he says.

9.40am: Seremban, Negri Sembilan - The voting process has been generally smooth up to now.

But DAP election worker Lawrence Fah, located near Sekolah Wawasan in Seremban 2,  complains that the EC had prevented them from helping voters check their names and voting stream.

9.33am: Pekan, Pahang - Star Online reports that BN head Najib Abdul Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor have cast their votes at Sekolah Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah.

In Pagoh, Muhyiddin Yassin cast his vote at SM Sri Muar at about 8:20am, according to Berita Harian.

At Lembah Pantai, Umno Wanita chief Shahrizat Abdul Jalil cast her votes at 9.14am, based on her tweet. 

Nanyang Siang Pau reports that the DAP's Karpal Singh has voted.

Sin Chew Daily says a female voter in Puchong who smudged her ballot papers with the indelible ink on her finger had asked for replacement ballots - and waited 10 minutes to get these.

9.30am: Bukit Mertajam, Penang - DAP's Bukit Mertajam candidate Steven Sim Chee Keong complains that Election Commission officers are "barring" people from voting unless they show their slips.

NONE"People are compelled to take the slip before being allowed to vote. I was 'forced' to take the slip as well," he says.

"Some folks have been turned off by double queueing. I protested to the Returning Officer and he said he has given orders to stop the (compulsory vetting).

"The EC should not deny ppl to vote by creating unnecessary obstacles."

Sim says that, by creating unnecessary obstacles, the EC is denying Malaysians their constitutional rights under Article 119.

"I urge the people to be patient, do not give up even if forced to queue.

"In 2010, I was invited to be an international observer to the Philippines general election. The people there queued from morning till evening to cast their votes," he says.

"Malaysians, this is our time. The country needs us. Keep calm, persevere."

9.30am: Segamat, Johor - BN's Segamat incumbent and candidate Dr S Subramaniam declines to speculate on the possibility of losing.

He says he wants to remain positive.

"We have done our work in the parliamentary constituency of Segamat and I believe we still have a chance of winning albeit a small majority," he tells journalists after voting.

"Even though the competition is stiff, we've seen some changes with Indian support returning to BN and Malay support remaining solid. This will allow BN to regain more seats compared to 2008."

9.25am: Gelang Patah, Johor - Before leaving the SJK(C) Pu Sze polling station, the DAP's Lim Kit Siang talks to Johor Bahru Utara district police chief Ruslan Hassan over the arrest of a Chinese youth.

NONEAccording to Ruslan, the police had detected the youth climbing over the wall and jumping into the polling centre.

"We will investigate why he trespassed when the gate is opened ... I don't think he is a registered voter here. We are still checking."

However, a friend of the youth argues that he did not climb over the wall but had entered through the main gate of the school.

Kit Siang and DAP's Skudai candidate Dr Boo Cheng Hau have spoken briefly with the youth. Boo passes him a name card and asks him to call the number on the card for assistance.

9.20am: Batu Caves, Selangor -: Incumbent PKR candidate Amirudin Shari complains the EC has wrongly printed its ballot papers.

pkr weeklly pc 090807 amirudin shariHe says that, on April 20, when nominations were filed, he and another Pakatan Rakyat candidate were placed No 1 on the list, while Independent Suman Gopal was at No 2 and the BN candidate Ravisandran Narayan was at No 3.

When Amirudin (left) checked today, his name is listed at No 2 while Ravindran's is placed at No 1. The Independent is at No 3.

'We will lodge an official complaint with the EC as this is against the Election Regulations 1981 Section 11 (2). This is an election irregularity and will result in confusion to the voters, says Amirudin.

9.17am: St Michael's school, Penampang, Sabah - Voters park their cars a kilometre away to get to this polling centre.

NONEOne young man walking next to an elderly woman who has no teeth tells her she need not fear anyone.

"Let people say anything, you just vote for who you want (kau tanda saja X)," he says.

Penampang is being contested by PKR's Ignatius Dorell Leiking, BN's Bernard Dompok and Star's Melanie Annol.

DAP's Dr Edwin Bosi, who is contesting the state seat here, is greeted by handshakes and hugs by some voters.

9.15am: Selayang, Selangor - BN's Taman Templer state candidate Subahan Kamal has cast his vote at the SK Agama Selayang Baru.

"I feel excited. The voters will determine if I've worked hard enough over the last five years," the incumbent tells reporters.

Some 200 voters waiting in line to vote.

9.15am: Pekan parliamentary candidate Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak andDatin Seri Rosmah Mansor arrive at Sekolah Sains Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah to cast their ballots.

NONE

9.12am: SMK Buloh Kasap, Segamat, Johor - BN's Segamat candidate Dr S Subramaniam arrives with his wife.

Journalists have to rush here after Subramaniam's press team has earlier gave them the wrong polling station in another school.

Subramaniam cast his votes 10 minutes later after briefly greeting other voters who are present.

9am: Permatang Pauh, Penang -
Anwar says he is confident of bringing change to the nation if given the mandate.

"There is clearly and undeniably a groundswell, a major shift among the population across ethnic lines. Initially, they said it did not touch the Malay (voter) base but all surveys - even our rallies - have shown a strong, formidable Malay presence.

"There's no reason why we can't garner support to take over Putrajaya."

Anwar said he believes there will be a peaceful transition of power should Pakatan win.

It will have to deal with all kind of problems in the electoral roll, he notes, given the number of complaints about non-Malaysians having been included.

Anwar advises supporters to remain calm after the results are announced and not to respond to any provocation.

He says he is satisfied with the election processs thus far, but that the siuation nationwide will have to be monitored.

Referring to a rumour that Dr Mahathir Mohamad has gone abroad, Anwar says he was told this as well.

"I wish him well (with) whatever medical treatment he is seeking," he says.

Up to last night, Mahathir had been seen campaigning in Kedah.

9am: Permatang Pauh, Penang - Anwar Ibrahim says that, if there is no major fraud or cheating in the election process, both sides should accept the result.

NONEHe put his level of confidence at Pakatan winning Putrajaya as "52 percent".

"I'm cautiously optimistic but since Najib had also coined the same term during his interview with Al-Jazerra, I will say we feel comfortable with the situation now."

On alleged vote-buying in Ayer Putih, he says a high turnout would overcome the impact.

"I have met people who received the money but said they will still vote for Pakatan."

Anwar also says Pakatan has a video recording of the last batch of 'phantom' voters who flew from Borneo on a Boeing 747.

8.55am: Gelang Patah, Johor - DAP's Gelang Patah candidate Lim Kit Siang visits SJK(C) Pu Sze at Skudai together with the party's Skudai candidate Dr Boo Cheng Hau.

Many Chinese voters are excited to see him.

"Mr Lim, can I shake your hands?" asks a young female voter.

One voter who does not recognise Lim is introduced to him by Boo.

She appears surprised when photographers surround her.

This is the first of six polling stations that Lim is due to visit today.

"The response was positive, very encouraging, but this is just the first polling centre," he says when asked about his feeling.

Lim himself is not voting in this general election as he is not registered in the Gelang Patah parliamentary constituency.

Boo Cheng Hau, who is wearing a red shirt, tells reporters that this is his lucky colour for the day.

8.45am: Jerlun, Kedah - Mukhriz Mahathir and his wife arrive at the Siputeh primary school to vote, joining about 806 others.

NONEMet by reporters after voting, he seemed bullish about about his chances of win the Ayer Hitam state seat for BN.

"God willing, every move we make must be confident. But don't overdo it. My confidence stems from my realisation that I must do the best I can to garner God's blessings.

"That is where my confidence comes from. The rest I leave to God," he says.

Asked to comment if reports that he will be named Kedah menteri besar if BN wins the state will backfire on him, Mukhriz says he does not feel the announcement will effect him negatively.

"Indeed, based on feedback, a lot of people have been waiting for the announcement, especially the Chinese community who are overjoyed. Before this, they were doubtful," he says.

8.54am: Muar, Johor - A voter at SJK (C) Nanhua by the name of Lee complains that the Election Commission is not following procedures as those who already know their voting channel are required to line up again in the school field to be vetted again.

He said normally voters would go to their respective channels directly, but the double vetting and the time wasted have frustrated many voters.
 
"We are concerned that some people may not be able to go work later today," he says, urging the EC to follow proper procedures. 

8.44am: Permatang Pauh, Penang - Election Commission (EC) officers tries to eject Agence France-Presse (AFP) chief reporter Goh Chai Hin from Sek Keb Sri Penanti as he does not have the EC’s pink oath slip. However, Goh refuses to leave.

"I have got the media pass from both EC and the Information Ministry. I was never told about this,” he says.

NONEIncumbent MP Anwar Ibrahim arrives with his wife, Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, to vote.

Dressed in a white shirt and wearing a songkok, he says Pakatan is optimistic that it will capture Putrajaya.

He expresses his disgust at the open attempts to buy votes in Penang. "It is sickening," he decries.

8.24am: SK Beruas, Beruas, Perak - More than 50 voters are queuing at different classrooms to cast their votes.

Chow Kok June, who works for a multinational company in Singapore, says he has just cast his first vote at Malaysia’s election. Speaking to Malaysiakini, the 28-year-old says he takes pride in fulfilling his responsibility as a citizen.

“I hope there will be some changes,” he says, adding that he will be going back to Singapore tomorrow.

Yiew Sin Keat, 27, is so excited to cast her first vote that she got up early this morning.

NONE“The country needs to change,” she beams. She will be driving back to Kuala Lumpur, where she works, soon to avoid the expected traffic jam along the highway.

Both are voting in the Beruas parliamentary seat and Pengkalan Baru state seat.

Beruas sees a straight fight between Chang Ko Youn (BN) and Ngeh Koo Ham (DAP), while Pengkalan Baru is a three-way battle among Abd Manaf Hashim (BN), Khairuddin Abd Malik (PAS) and Ahmad Nizam Ibrahim (Independent).

8.15am: Seri Delima, Penang: As early as 7.30am, 100 people have gathered at the Chung Hwa voting centre to cast their votes. Old age and disability fail to keep people away from doing their national duty.

DAP secretary-NONEgeneral and caretaker Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng arrives with his wife Betty Chew and his mother, Neo Yok Tee, 73.

Chew wears a white cap to cover her bald head, which she shaved on Friday to protest against vote-buying. Lim looks rather exhausted, probably due to the intense 15-day campaign.

8:06am - Subang Jaya, Selangor: The line at Sek Men USJ12 is about one kilometre long as the gate opens.

NONEAbout 3,000 voters came early to vote. Malaysiakini sub-editor G Umakanthan says he has never seen such a huge number of people coming out to vote this early.

The state seat falls under the Kelana Jaya parliament seat.

8.05am - Lembah Pantai: Long queues are reported at polling stations in this Kuala Lumpur constituency, which sees PKR's Nurul Izzah Anwar defending her seat against a strong challenge from Umno's Raja Nong Chik Zainal Abidin. 

According to a voter, it may take about one hour to vote.

NONE8.03am - SK Pandan Indah, Pandan, Selangor: About 300 people are queuing up at this polling station to cast their vote.

"I want to do my civic duty," said Tan Sew Chai (right), who is first in the queue.

The 47-year-old delivery truck driver says he has waited since 6.30am.

8.01am - SK Buloh Kasap, Segamat: Some 40 voters, who had been waiting outside the school as early as 7.30am, are allowed into the polling station.

BN's Segamat candidate S Subramaniam, who is also caretaker human resource minister, is expected to vote here later after completing his morning prayers at Sri Thandayuthabaani temple.

His rival PKR's Chua Jui Meng, who was fielded in Segamat at the eleventh hour, was not able to change his address and will not be voting in this constituency.

8am - Kuala Lumpur: The Malaysian Meteorological Department has forecast that there will be no rain in the morning today in most states while some will have overcast skies.
   
NONEThe states are Perlis, Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu, Penang, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Malacca and the Federal Territories.
   
However, there will be rain in the morning in some areas in Perak, Pahang, Sabah and Sarawak.
   
"This weather forecast is only a guideline for voters. They are encouraged to come out early to vote as some areas will experience rain and thunderstorm in the evening," said the department.

8am - Kuala Lumpur: The skies are forecast to be clear across Malaysia this morning, as the country heads to the polls for the 13th time to elect a new government.

The 15-day campaign period ended midnight yesterday, and today will see Malaysian voters make their mark, both on their ballots as well as the annals of history, in what is seen to be Malaysia's most closely fought and hotly contested general election, as BN struggles to hold on to power with Pakatan Rakyat snapping at its heels.

NONESome have dubbed this, "The mother of all electoral battles".

A total of 222 parliamentary seats and 505 state assembly seats are on the block, most in straight fights between the two major coalitions, though 270 independents, the largest ever in history, are also looking to make their mark.

However, Sarawak's 71-seat state assembly will not be holding its polls as it has already done so in 2011.

The atmosphere this morning is electric as supporters decked out in party colours throng the streets for a last-minute show of strength as voters trek to the polling stations on this day of days.

7.45am: Kuala Lumpur - Polls will open at 8am today as Malaysia decides between BN and Pakatan Rakyat on which coalition will rule the country for the next five years.

Voters are urged to vote early as showers and thunderstorms are expected in many parts of the country in the afternoon. Polling will end at 5pm and the counting of votes will begin soon after. Results will start coming in at around 8pm.

azlanThere are 222 parliamentary seats up for grabs, with the ruling BN currently holding 135 seats, Pakatan Rakyat, 75, and the other 12 going to independents and three other parties. Whichever coalition that wins 112 seats will claim power.

Meanwhile, Pakatan controls four states - Selangor, Penang, Kelantan and Kedah, while BN has nine under its belt.

This election will see a huge number of new voters - an increase of three million, or about 25 percent, since the 2008 GE, making it the biggest spike in Malaysia’s history.