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Press Statement by Lim Guan Eng in Petaling Jaya on Thursday, 14th February 2008: 

Challenges Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to practice transparency by openly revealing BN expenditure accounts does not exceed RM 94.9 million to ensure full compliance with election spending limits of RM 200,000 per parliamentary constituency and RM 100,000 per state constituency 

DAP challenges Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to practice transparency by openly revealing BNís expenditure accounts does not exceed RM 94.9 million to ensure full compliance with election spending limits of RM 200,000 per parliamentary constituency and RM 100,000 per state constituency. Under section 19 of the Election Offences Act 1954, a candidate for every Parliamentary and state constituency can not spend more than RM 200,000 and RM 100,000 respectively.

Such public revelation of BN election spending is necessary to curb abuse of money politics, where BN have repeatedly used money to buy votes in violation of election laws. The coming 2008 general elections would limit BN to RM 44.4 million for the 222 parliamentary seats and RM50.5 million for the 505 seats to be contested. However with the widespread abuse of money and BNís employing a corrupt practice, this limit of RM 94.9 million in election spending is expected to be breached and violated as done in past general elections.

BN candidates have a history of dishonest and dirty tactics by exceeding spending limits without any action taken by ACA. Opposition parties can accept defeats if that is the will of the people but not if it is brought about by unlawful means or dirty tactics prohibited by the very electoral laws that the EC is supposed to enforce. Tan Sri Rashid shocked Malaysians on 7.3.2006 when he said that that up to RM 110 million was spent on elections posters alone in the 2004 general elections.

Spending RM 200,000 on Parliamentary seats and RM 100,000 on state seats mean that a political party like BN, that contested all the 219 Parliamentary and 445 state constituencies in the 2004 general elections, can not exceed spending RM 88.3 million. Only BN has the financial resources to spend RM110 million to spent on posters alone in the last general elections making those elected illegal and the whole ruling government technically illegal under electoral laws.

Spending above limits imposed by the Elections Offences Act 1954 is an illegal practice under Section 27 and is subjected to a fine of RM 5,000 by the Sessions Court, disqualification as a wakil rakyat and rights as a voter. However such laws are marked more by its breach than its compliance. ECís failure to act and question the legality of the BN government not only makes a mockery of the very election laws it has drafted but also the spirit of democracy that votes should not be bought and sold.

Due to the failure of EC to act, DAP challenges Abdullah to prove his commitment towards ensuring a clean elections by BN by openly revealing BN expenditure accounts to prove that BN comply with election laws and does not play dirty to win election with money politics. Unlike DAP whose leadersí integrity are beyond reproach, BN had admitted that some of their proposed candidates many not be clean requiring the ACA to vet and clear them of any wrongdoing.


* Lim Guan Eng, DAP Secretary-General

 
 

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