EC Chairmanís challenge: Kerk Kim Hock to
counter challenge all 7 members of the Election Commission
by Kerk Kim Hock
the Election Commission (EC) Chairman, Datuk Abdul Rashid, was quoted in the
Sin Chew Jit Poh on 23.2.2003 as challenging political parties and NGOs
which had alleged that the EC had been biased towards the government or that
the EC had not been neutral to see him and argue their cases out with him, I
had on 24.2.2003 and 27.2.2003 publicly stated my acceptance of his
I had, through public statements which were also faxed to Datuk Rashid,
stated my preparedness to argue with him on the question of the constituency
delineation exercise for the Kota Melaka parliamentary constituency.
I was prepared to provide Datuk Rashid with the opportunity to convince me
that the EC had acted fairly and professionally in accordance with the
principles of democracy and fairness as well as the criteria that it had
used in the constituency delineation.
However, it is obvious that he has decided not to meet me, as until today,
he has not responded to me.
Rashid 's silence is most surprising and shocking, as he knows fully well
that in the recent delineation exercise, there were allegations and
criticisms on the ECís failure to adhere to the principle of democracy and
spirit of fairness. Hence, his silence will certainly create more doubts
about the ECís fairness and professionalism in handling the delineation
There have been occasions when Datuk Rashid countered such accusations with
general answers through the printed media , but his failure to counter such
allegations in face to face meetings with the doubters and critics has not
effectively dispelled the allegations made against the EC.
Hence, when he openly made the challenge to any political party and NGO
representative to argue their cases out with him, I immediately seized the
When so many Kota Melaka voters have questioned the ECís impartiality in the
delineation exercise for the Kota Melaka parliamentary constituency, Datuk
Rashid must have the courage to justify the ECís decision.
Since Rashid has chosen to remain silent, I will therefore, through an
official letter to be presented to the EC this week, challenge all 7 members
of the EC to meet me and satisfactorily answer the following three main
questions with regard to the delineation exercise for the Kota Melaka
what criteria and factors were
taken into consideration when the EC made the original alterations to the
Kota Melaka parliamentary constituency?
what objections were raised by the
Melaka state government that convinced the EC to, in a departure from its
traditional practice, make extensive changes to the original proposals and
come out with amended proposals which are seen to be lacking in fairness and
why the EC has decided not to hold
a local enquiry in accordance with Section 5 of Part II of the Thirteen
Schedule of the Federal Constitution after 113 registered voters of Kota
Melaka parliamentary constituency submitted their written objections to the
* Kerk Kim Hock, DAP Secretary
General & MP for Kota Melaka