Intentional tampering cannot be ruled out as the cause for repeated flaws in the electoral roll, said Bersih chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah.
“While some inaccuracies can be put down to honest human error given the flawed system, Bersih will not rule out intentional tampering to tip the scales to favour certain political parties in elections as the occurrence of such mistakes are happening repeatedly,” she said in a press conference in Petaling Jaya today.
One of the examples of mistakes that occur repeatedly are voters in the same household who are registered in different localities, state or parliamentary seats, Maria said.
This mistake has been pointed out to the Election Commission (EC) many times before, she added, yet the error persists.
“The EC has repeatedly claimed that it has corrected the electoral roll but in every quarter, new mistakes are discovered alongside existing errors by the Bersih monitoring team.
“EC’s incompetence casts a dark shadow over the validity and fairness in the present redelineation exercise,” she said.
Instead of blaming their bad image on negative perception, she said the EC should start improving or overhauling their system first.
Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh, who was also present at the press conference, said she had sent two letters to the EC, regarding flaws in the electoral roll she detected.
She discovered that voters who live within the Kuantan parliamentary seat were instead registered in the neighbouring constituency.
Fuziah also found that two polling centres at schools which are no longer situated at that address were gazetted by the EC.
Though she sent in formal letters of complaints to the EC, she said the commission had remained silent.
“They have been silent, refused to see me, refused to even give me an appointment.
“How did this error happen if not for the incompetency of EC? Or was it planned? Because it is not an isolated incident,” Fuziah said.
Though she initially thought these mistakes might have been the cause of human error, EC’s lack of cooperation with her had caused her to wonder if “there is something EC is trying to hide”.
“If the EC, which is supposed to be an independent body, acts this way, then I cannot dismiss the idea that EC is no longer an independent body,” she said.
Source : Geraldine Tong @ Malaysiakini