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As Ijok is not a MCA stronghold like Machap possibility of a higher swing than the 5% swing of Chinese voters achieved in Machap

 


Press Statement

by Lim Guan Eng


 

(Petaling Jaya, Tuesday): The declaration by MCA President Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting that MCA will go all out to strengthen the support of Chinese voters in the Ijok by-election for the Barisan Nasional candidate will be a test of Ongís leadership of Selangor, of which he is the Selangor Chairman. Even though MCA has four branches in Ijok, two each in Kampung Baru Ijok and Kampung Baru Batang Berjuntai, Ijok is not seen as a MCA stronghold. 

Ong clearly realizes that if DAP can achieve a swing of more than 5% of Chinese voters in a MCA stronghold like Machap (their strongest seat in Melaka), there is a higher possibility of the opposition candidate achieving a significantly higher swing of Chinese voters in Ijok. Clearly BN will be going all out to resolve outstanding local issues as well as pump money and development projects to buy votes as they have done in Machap.

For this reason, even though Ijok may not be a MCA stronghold the opposition candidate for Ijok should not discount the effectiveness of money politics as well as dirty tactics of fear and violence used so effectively by BN in Machap. So extensive was bribery, corrupt practices and money politics during the Machap by-election when each participant in an open-air MCA karaoke session at Machap Baru flats was given RM 20 each instead of having to pay a fee as is normally the case of those taking part in karaoke singing sessions

No wonder BN was disappointed despite such dirty tactics, they could not achieve their dual objective of increasing their majority or causing the DAP candidate to lose their deposit. DAPís reduction of BNís majority by 481 votes broke BNís string of successes in increasing its majority in the three previous by-elections since 2004 general elections.

 

 

BN

Opposition

By-election Majority

Majority 2004 general elections

Kuala Berang

 

6051

PAS- 3992

2059

1695

Pengkalan Pasir

 

7422

PAS-7288

139(BN won)

(56) PAS won

Batu Talam

 

6276

Ind-419

5857

2761

What is the point of having the 1954 Election Offences Act if Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman continues to publicly dismiss the laws against corrupt practices with such open contempt?  

What is the point of having the 1954 Election Offences Act if Election Commission (EC) Chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman continues to publicly dismiss the laws against corrupt practices with such open contempt? Rashid had told The Sun today that  special allocations or development promises by ministers to voters during an election cannot be construed as vote-buying.

However Rashid also said that election candidates and political parties can not make promises to voters during an election. What is the difference between a Deputy Prime Minister or Ministers and political parties when they come daily making all sorts of promises to the extent that they can blatantly state that the implementation of such promises will be dependant on the outcome of the election or even distributing money to influence votes?

Such acts by the Deputy Prime Minister and the Ministers are illegal because they constitute vote-buying. Either Rashid is naÔve or pretending to be ignorant of the Elections Offences Act 1954 when he said that such vote-buying is not the EC problem but the Anti-Corruption Agency.

In Part 3 of the Election Offences Act, there are three sections dealing with corrupt practices namely treating voters with food and drinks, undue influence and bribery. These sections make it clear that a candidate or those campaigning for him can not promise gifts or give money to voters to influence their votes. By refusing to enforce these laws, Rashid is sanctioning such corrupt practices and abuse of government machinery by BN.

Rashid is behaving unlawfully by condoning the corrupt practices of BN instead of criticizing BNís illegal conduct. Such failure to uphold the credibility of the EC only justifies the call by opposition parties for Rashidís resignation as EC Chairman for being neither impartial nor fair and clearly acting as an agent of BN. 

 

(17/4/2007)


* Lim Guan Eng,  Secretary-General of DAP

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