The Election Commission (EC) has denied claims that its electoral redelineation exercise was meant to benefit certain parties.
Instead, the commission said it was merely acting on its powers under the Federal Constitution when it issued a report to alter electoral boundaries.
“The EC is only executing its role and responsibilities as stated under the Federal Constitution.
“The recommendations made can only be passed at the Dewan Rakyat through the Members of Parliament,” it said in a statement.
The EC’s current redelineation exercise has sparked criticism from Pakatan Harapan leaders and even concern from Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties MCA and Gerakan.
DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang even suggested today that Pakatan Harapan consider holding snap elections in Selangor, claiming that the redelineation exercise was aimed at helping Umno recapture the state and to help BN regain its two-thirds parliamentary majority.
The EC also said today that it was too early to speak about its recommendations or allegations made against the commission, citing a local inquiry that will address these.
It therefore urged those who were qualified under the law to make objections to do so soon.
“The EC welcomes all objections but they must go through the right channel and law,” it said.
The EC had earlier said that objections to the recommendations can only be made by the state government, local authorities who are partly or partially included in the redelineation exercise, or a group of no less than 100 registered voters of an affected constituency.
The EC in an 18-page notice had reportedly proposed to alter the electoral boundaries of several parliamentary and state constituencies in all states bar Perlis, Labuan and Putrajaya.
The proposed amendments could see 12 parliamentary and 34 state constituencies in the peninsula undergo a name change while it also listed 13 proposed new state constituencies for Sabah, increasing the number of the state seats to 73.
But Pakatan Harapan leaders alleged the some of the proposed redelineation exercise would carve out opposition-held federal and state seats to favour BN, especially in Johor and Selangor. Chinese parties MCA and Gerakan have also expressed concern over the exercise.
Among the constituencies that would be affected by the proposed changes are Pagoh in Johor and Lembah Pantai. The former is held by sacked Umno leader Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and the latter by PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar.
The Malay Mail Online