BERSIH: Greater electoral reforms

We were least surprise when MCA leader like Ong Ka Chuan and several Umno leaders say ‘no’ to the use of indelible ink. That’s because with the introduction of indelible ink, they cannot manipulate future elections with multiple voting anymore. In past elections, certain members of the ruling parties were specailly tasked to vote more than once on polling day. Can you imagine, constituency like Kuala Terengganu had a turnout rate of more than 95%!

One needs not ‘sympathise’ with BN component parties because they still have plenty other manipulations in their hands to help win elections. Thier mantra is Cheat to Win!

4 June 2007

Media Release

BERSIH welcomes EC’s decision on indelible ink

BERSIH welcomes the Election Commission’s decision to consider the use of indelible ink in elections. Its responsiveness to one of BERSIH’s three immediate demands will strengthen our democratic institutions
and increase the legitimacy of the elected government.

This long-awaited decision is the result of the unwavering demands of the 64 NGOs and political  parties that support BERSIH. This encouraging development suggests that civil society’s voice counts and all Malaysians who desire accountability, transparency and participation in public affairs must articulate and lobby for other forms of electoral and political reform.

However, the SPR must be seen to act speedily to ensure the implementation of indelible ink for the next election and further to make sure that such implementation is in accordance with internationally accepted best practices.

These efforts to promote democracy must be supported, nurtured and continued. BERSIH urges the Elections Commission to take up the other reform demands listed below:

1. Cleaning up the electoral roll

While indelible ink can eliminate multiple voting, it does not prevent the impersonation and involuntary transfer of voters. To ensure all legitimate voters and only all legitimate voters can vote in the elections, EC must advice against any decision by the government to hold elections before the electoral roll is satisfactorily cleaned up
and updated.

2. Abolition of domestic postal voting

Dialogues and debate on the continuity or termination of this non-transparent process must begin immediately. Should the EC, security forces and others object to the abolition of this process, they must articulate their rationale publicly or else suggest ways to overcome the problems associated with this process, such as the disappearance of 5,000 ballots in Lumut over four consecutive ,elections since 1990.

With the exception of personnel who are on active duty on polling day, army and police personnel should be allowed to vote in polling centres. For personnel on active duty who are required to cast their votes before polling day, polling agents from the contesting parties should be allowed to observe the polling process.

We understand that EC Chairman is leaving office at the end of this year unless his term is extended by the Government. Tan Sri Abdul Rashid, who served as Secretary of the EC between 1979 and 1995,
returned to serve as its Chairman since 2001. Unfortunately, the 2004 general election saw some of the worst irregularities ever and this trend worsened in the recent Ijok by-election. If Tan Sri Rashid wishes to leave office with some form of legacy of reform, we demand
that the EC act on other more long-term actions such as:

1. Duration of campaigning period

The campaign period should be a minimum of 21 days, if not five weeks. Short campaign periods of less than 10 days must be reviewed. A shorter campaign period tends to disadvantage opposition parties, which operate with fewer resources than the Government, as well as lack access to state and public media. The Government’s prerogative to
call an election as and when it suits its partisan interests is
another reason why a longer campaign period is needed, in order to maintain a ‘level playing field’ for all parties.

2. Media access

All parties should have equal access to local and national media, particularly during the campaigning period. One administrative measure that could be taken would be an organized debate on national TV. The EC should champion rights of freedom of expression and freedom of
information, in order to ensure a more level playing field during elections. Recognising problems with the concentration of media ownership in the hands of governing political parties, the EC should further champion the cause of diversity of media ownership.

3. Right of reply

A code of conduct must be issued to ensure balanced reporting in all media, based on the Malaysian Press Institute’s code of ethics for election reporting, as presented in the draft Media Council Act 2001.


5 Responses to “BERSIH: Greater electoral reforms”

  1. ronnieliutiankhiew Says:


    ■日期/Jun 05, 2007 ■时间/01:51:28 pm
    ■新闻/家国风云 ■作者/ 记者














    (三)答复权:正如2001年媒体理事会法令初稿所说的,以马来西亚新闻学院(Malaysian Press Institute)的选举报道行为操守为基础,向所有媒体分派一份操守指南,以确保平衡报道。

  2. KSTAN Says:

    Ronnie, I’m puzzled when you said you were shocked that Ong Ka Chuan disagreed about the usage of the indelible ink. Ong have been loosing the seat of Batu Gajah to DAP’s YB Fong Po Kuan since 1999. If the usage of the indelible ink comes into effect, he can’t get the SPR to cheat for him this time. Can’t you see, he’s in a desperado sorry state to win Batu Gajah at all cost. Sibling rivary lah, if my brother have a parliamentary seat, so must I. Hahaha …. just joking lah! 🙂

  3. ronnieliutiankhiew Says:

    dear kstan, i did not say i was shocked by Ong’s position. I said “we were least surprise… i.e. vey little surprise.
    I think Ka Chuan would not dare to face Fong anymore now that the indelible ink is out. the majority obtained by po kuan last round was too big for him to do anything, including transfering MCA voters from outside. No?

  4. Liu Zhen bao Says:

    The one who manufactures indelible ink also manufactures the solvent of the so-called ‘indelible’ ink! So what’s there to rejoice about?
    With crooks, indelible ink is nothing more than a charade!

    I would be pleased to know the source of MCA’s rejection of the indelible ink – I want to spread the news to some die-hard MCA friends.

  5. ronnieliutiankhiew Says:

    dear zhen bao,
    if i’m not mistaken, there’s no such thing as the solution for the indelible ink as yet. as for the news report, get a copy of Oriental daily (yesterday edition). Ong even slighted the use of ink as outdated. He actually suggested something he hinself does not understand i.e. online inspection with SPR. That’s being done for years now. what is he talking about? and how does this resolve the problem of multiple voting and phatom voters?
    take care, ronnie

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