‘Why is the EC allowing Umno to make spurious objections?’

Ong Kian Ming

Modified 8 Apr 2017, 9:45 am

MP SPEAKS | From Quarter 1 to Quarter 3 2016, a total of 4694 objections were received by the Election Commission (EC). Out of this total, 4,427 or 94 percent were objections that were filed in Selangor. This clearly shows that the focus of the objection exercise is in Selangor.

Our analysis of the objections from Q1 to Q3 2016 in Selangor shows two distinct trends. Firstly, out of the 36 seats which have objections, 30 or 86 percent were in seats which were contested by Umno in the 2013 general election. Secondly, of the 4427 objections in Selangor, 92.8 percent were Chinese voters, 5.8 percent were Indian voters and 1.2 percent were Malay voters. (See Table 1 below)

This trend continued in Q4 2016. A total of 2,550 objections were lodged in Selangor in 24 state seats. Out of the 24 state seats, 20 or 83 percent were seats contested by Umno in GE2013. Out of the 2,550 voters being objected to, 79.1 percent were Chinese voters, 6.3 percent were Indian voters and 14.2 percent were Malay voters (See Table 2 below).

We are not against the right to file objections against voters but these objections have to be filed based on solid grounds. For example, our colleagues in Johor have filed objections based on investigations that voters were being registered en masse in shop houses and in addresses which they do not live in.

In the case of Selangor, we have received many complaints about objections that were made on spurious grounds such as ‘the address of the voter cannot be found’ or ‘the voter is not known by the local residents’ when in fact, the objector has never visited the voter at his or her registered address.

We have received anecdotal evidence that the objections in Selangor are being filed by Umno members and Umno-linked entities.

At a time when the Election Commission is supposed to be encouraging more young Malaysians to register to vote, it is unacceptable that it is allowing Umno to carry out race-based voter objections in Selangor which will end up depriving thousands of young Malaysians from exercising their constitutional right to vote in the next general election.

The Election Commission should act immediately to stop these baseless objections which are happening in Selangor.

ONG KIAN MING is Serdang MP.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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