Gerrymandering, cheating still evident in second redelineation proposal, says Bersih

Source: Written by Bede Hong for The Malaysian Insight

Bersih chairman Maria Chin Abdullah says it is clear the Election Commission wishes to get the electoral delineation proposal passed before the general election, which accounts for its rushing the process when it has until September to complete it. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, January 15, 2018.

THE second redelineation proposal for Selangor’s electoral boundaries, which was released by the Election Commission today, still contains elements of malapportionment and gerrymandering.

Electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0 said although fewer seats would be affected by the proposed electoral boundary changes, the commission did not address existing distortions in voter representation.

“Our preliminary analysis shows that the EC has reversed most of its proposed changes in the first display,” Bersih chairman Maria Chin Abdullah said when contacted today.

“However, issues of malapportionment and gerrymandering still exist. The EC has not corrected these problems,” she said.

Read more

EC must protect the right of all overseas Malaysians to vote in GE-14 – Global Bersih Statement

Global Bersih is a non-profit organization established under the Swiss  Civil Code which aims to support Malaysian civil society’s efforts to
strengthen Malaysia’s maturing democracy using peaceful action, with  emphasis on the citizens’ right to a free and fair elections which is
ethical, impartial and transparent in all its stages of its  administration and implementation.

Global Bersih

Global Bersih

Press Statement

22 March 2017

The Electoral Commission must uphold the right of Malaysians overseas to vote in the upcoming General Elections (GE14) by taking all appropriate and necessary actions to enfranchise overseas Malaysians in accessing their right to vote, and to ensure a smooth process in registering overseas voters and implementing advance voting ballots for postal voters. There are approximately 1.4 million Malaysians living overseas (source: World Bank).

Under Section 2 of the Election (Registration of Electors) Regulations 2002, overseas Malaysians registered as an ‘ordinary elector’ must return to Malaysia to vote, whereas Malaysian students and civil servants based overseas can register as ‘absentee voters’ to be eligible for postal voting. However, this process enables only a portion of overseas Malaysians to participate in the elections process, as not many are able to afford the cost of travel. Furthermore, most embassies do not allow overseas Malaysians to register as ‘ordinary electors’ owing to lack of information and understanding. Read more

Election Commission should stop making excuses and take their job seriously — Bersih Statement

Press Statement

17 March 2017

imagesThe Election Commission (EC) has yet again proved their incompetence by giving non-answers to block the implementation of automatic voter registration.

Automatic voter registration means that a Malaysian citizen will be automatically registered as a voter when they reach the age of 21. This hastens the registration process and removes unnecessary barriers to exercising one’s basic democratic right to vote. Voter registration will be electronically linked to the National Registration Department (NRD), which will eliminate the lack of addresses, duplicate entries, and remove deceased persons and dubious entries from the electoral roll. Automatic voter registration is a cleaning process to correct a flawed electoral roll and incompetence.

The EC chairman, Mohd Hashim Abdullah, can only provide a flimsy excuse that “many issues” will arise if automatic voter registration is put into effect, failing to elaborate further. What’s more, he fears that the election body will be blamed for problems from changing the system. This is a truly embarrassing excuse as tackling such matters is something that the EC has to handle as it is part of what they are tasked to do. If the EC were held back by a fear of repercussions, then nothing will change. Read more

JAG Condemns Online Attack and Stands in Solidarity with #WomensMarchKL

Joint Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG)

Press Release

Kuala Lumpur, 14 March 2017

The Joint Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG) stands in solidarity with young women and allies under attack on Twitter as they share comments and contents in conjunction of the Perarakan Hari Wanita (#WomensMarchKL) event in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday, 11 March 2017. We denounce in the strongest term all forms of malicious, sexist and misogynistic harassment against women and trans women, whether perpetrated online or offline.

The peaceful event was live Tweeted, with photos, and their Tweets were widely shared. The event itself had an energetic turnout with mostly young participants, and the messages they carried, become targets of relentless attacks designed to disempower them.

Among the participants who received the most intense attacks is a teenage girl who carried a placard: “I wish to be the next Prime Minister but I can’t … Do you know why??? (Speech bubble: ‘Mana tudung?’)”. The teenager is reportedly extremely affected by the trolling and insults directed at her. Significant attacks were also targeted against those who carried placards in support of trans women as well as body shaming of at least 1 participant. Read more

Women are pushing boundaries to end centuries of oppression

Source: Aliran

download (2)Women want to matter in the decision-making process, in the economy and in places of leadership, says Nalini Elumalai.

“O sisters, O sisters, let’s stand up right now
It’s never too late to start from the start

Sisters, sisters
Sisters, sisters

Wisdom, O wisdom, that’s what we ask for
And yes, my dear sisters, we must learn to ask
Freedom, O freedom, that’s what we fight for
And yes, my dear sisters, we must learn to fight”

By Yoko Ono & John Lennon

On 8 March in conjunction with International Women’s Day, we in Jaringan Rakyat Tertindas (Jerit) extend our unconditional solidarity, support and commitment to all the activists, defenders of the human rights of women and campaigners all around the world from all walks of life who are confronting exploitation, discrimination, racism, corruption and democracy.

We are in solidarity with all who are fighting for a better world, absolute freedom, justice and dignity and we offer salutes to women that are liberating themselves and the world from all forms of oppression. Read more

The Election Commission should implement automatic voter registration, not hand out freebies — Bersih 2.0 Press Statement

Source: Bersih

BERSIH 2.0 notes the Election Commission’s (EC) new campaign with AirAsia and Sinar Harian in offering newly registered voters a chance to win free flights. However, we question the need to offer gifts to entice people to register to vote when it is the EC’s basic duty to do so in the first place.

Instead of offering freebies, the EC should focus their resources on implementing automatic voter registration thus eradicating the need for voter registration drives completely. Automatic voter registration will be electronically linked with the National Registration Department (NRD) and will eliminate lack of addresses, duplicate entries, as well as remove deceased persons, and other dubious entries from the electoral roll. The EC has yet to engage with BERSIH 2.0 on this issue which we have been pushing for since our inception.

Furthermore, the EC is playing Jekyll and Hyde in their actions. They allow baseless objections against new voters, revoked political party’s Assistant Registrar Officers (AROs) after GE13, and complicate and lengthen the process of acquiring ARO status making them a scarce resource. They have placed obstacles and restrictions in the way of registering new voters, yet now they are giving rewards to coax more people to register to vote. Read more

Apply for a Brunsfield scholarship for the University of Oxford Master’s in International Human Rights Law programme

mst-in-int-human-rights-1The University of Oxford is pleased to announce that admissions for the Master’s in International Human Rights Law at the University of Oxford are now open for the course starting September 2017.

This part-time degree – involving online distance learning and two summer residential sessions held at New College, Oxford – is designed for lawyers and other human rights advocates who wish to pursue advanced studies in international human rights law alongside work or other responsibilities. Read more

Health Ministry confirms Klang woman is first Zika case in Malaysia

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The first confirmed case of Zika in Malaysia involved a woman who had returned from Singapore with her husband on August 21, 2016 after a three-day. — MMO File pic

The first confirmed case of Zika in Malaysia involved a woman who had returned from Singapore with her husband on August 21, 2016 after a three-day. — MMO File pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 1 — Malaysia confirmed today the first case of the Zika virus infection in the country involving a Selangor woman who had visited Singapore.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the first confirmed case of Zika in the country involved the woman who had returned from Singapore with her husband on August 21 after a three-day visit to their adult daughter there.

“This patient is a 58 years-old woman residing in Bandar Botanic, Klang, Selangor and is the mother of a female confirmed with Zika infection in Singapore,” he said in a statement today, noting that the ministry received report of this first-ever case yesterday.

According to Subramaniam, the doctor at a private clinic had on August 30 diagnosed this patient as a “suspected case of Zika” after she sought medical attention for her rashes since August 28 — one of the symptoms of Zika.

The diagnosis was also due to her recent travel to Singapore and her daughter being confirmed as having Zika virus infection on August 30.

The woman tested positive for Zika virus based on the result yesterday of her urine test while her blood test result is still pending, he said. Read more

Abu Kassim to step down as MACC chief Aug 1

Source: The Star

Abu Kassim Mohamed. Pic taken from The Star Online.

Abu Kassim Mohamed. Pic taken from The Star Online.

PUTRAJAYA: Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed (pic) will step down as the chief commissioner of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on Aug 1, says Government Chief Secretary Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa.

Ali said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, as per sub-section 5(3) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Act 2009 (Act 694), had consented to the application by Abu Kassim, 55, to end his service in that capacity by serving his one month’s notice.

In a statement issued Thursday, Ali said Abu Kassim would continue to serve as an anti-corruption service officer until his mandatory retirement on Dec 6, 2020.

Abu Kassim was appointed MACC chief commissioner on Jan 1, 2010.

“The Government expresses its gratitude to Tan Sri Abu Kassim who has served the country well in his capacity as the MACC chief commissioner,” Ali said.

He said that with Abu Kassim at its helm, the MACC had discharged its functions with excellence in line with its vision to create a Malaysian society free of corruption based on spiritual values and high morals. – Bernama