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Amanah wants Harapan council to act fast on redelineation

Published:  |  Modified:

Parti Amanah Negara strategy director Dzulkefly Ahmad wants Pakatan Harapan's presidential douncil to convene immediately and endorse a unified action plan to move against the Election Commission’s (EC) proposed relideneation exercise.

"What needs doing soonest is for the presidential council to assemble a meeting so as to endorse an action plan already prepared by the Harapan secretariat," Dzulkefly said in a statement today.

He called for a wide-ranging, multi-pronged action by all stakeholders and activists, both partisan and non-partisan, for a massive nationwide mobilisation to educate the rakyat on the matter.

"With the very challenging task ahead, it is only urgent and pertinent that leaders of Pakatan Harapan quickly convene a meeting of the presidential council, now that the secretariat has met and concurred on some concrete action plans to be executed."

While Amanah entirely understands the overarching concern underlying the call by DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang (photo) for a snap election in the state of Selangor, Dzulkefly said Amanah also concurs with Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali that the interest of the rakyat of Selangor should override.

In any case, he argued that such differences aside, both Lim and Azmin are on the same page, insofar as serving the best interests of the state and indeed, the entire nation.

Dzulkefly opined that if the ‘plundering’ of the ill-fated state investment fund 1MDB is now under prosecution in the courts of other jurisdictions, the ‘plundering of democracy’ through gross gerrymandering must not escape the people’s jurisdiction in this country.

In one fell swoop, Dzulkefly said, the EC has literally breached every constitutional requirement for a fair and meaningful delineation exercise as provided for in the Federal Constitution.

He referred to Section 2(c), Part 1, 13th Schedule of the constitution, which clearly stipulates that constituencies within the same state must be ‘approximately equal’ in electoral size.

Exceptions are not for all rural constituencies, but only for constituencies with vast geographical areas.

'Free and fair elections a real farce'

"With the EC’s delineation proposal, it has turned the timeless maxim of ‘one man, one vote’ for free and fair elections to be held into a real farce and a huge mockery.

"An academician, Wong Chin Huat, has questioned why Paya Terubong will have 41,707 voters (under the redelineation), while neighbouring Air Putih will only have 12,752 voters, putting 3.27 votes in one to be equal to one vote in another," he said.

Dzulkefly also asked why the new Damansara parliamentary constituency (currently Petaling Jaya Utara) is to have 150,439 voters, while Sabak Bernam will only have 37,126 voters under the EC’s proposals.

"That will be four Damansara voters equal to one voter in Sabak Bernam. Incidentally, these two redelination proposals are in the Harapan-ruled states of Penang and Selangor respectively! Despicable is a polite word," he said.

In-depth analysis by academicians and political think-tanks are many, he added. All have concluded that the EC has, at best, done a very bad job. Even the BN’s component parties have surmised the outcome as ‘worrisome’ and ‘detrimental to racial harmony’.

These self-same truths have also led to the leaders of the BN’s Chinese parties to allude to sinister reasoning and motivations behind the EC exercise, which they also worry may marginalise the minority races.

As for Harapan's stand on the redelineation exercise, Dzulkefly said: "To conclude that it may determine the outcome of the 14th general election is a gross understatement. It is indisputably a blatant and daylight robbery of electoral democracy. It is gerrymandering at its worst."

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