Reminder not to support opposition was ‘fatherly advice’, says Mahdzir’s press team

Source: The Malaysian Insight

Mahdzir Khalid

Education Minister Mahdzir Khalid was ‘only advising you not to make statements that could negatively affect your future’. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, January 20, 2018.

EDUCATION Minister Mahdzir Khalid was giving “fatherly advice” when he reminded teachers and education officers not to support the opposition, the minister’s press team said on Twitter.

“What he said was like the advice that a father would give his children and not as the media have made it out to be in news that have gone viral,” the Education Ministry’s Media and Communications Office posted on Twitter late last night.

“He advises everyone, especially the civil servants, to be wise when making decisions and when issuing statements against the government, because they serve the government for the sake of the people.

“The statements you make can undermine your (civil servants) position in the public sector. Hence, he was only advising you not to make statements that could negatively affect your future. Thank you.”

The tweets were accompanied by a report of Mahdzir being quoted by Chinese daily Kwong Wah telling teachers that disciplinary action would be taken against them if they backed the opposition.

He said civil servants, including education department officers and teachers, were barred from joining any opposition party or criticising the government as these were tantamount to sabotaging the government and tarnishing its image.

Mahdzir, who was delivering the ministry’s new year message at an event in Putrajaya, was quoted telling teachers who were guilty of such acts to resign before the ministry asked them to do so.

It was all right, however, if the teachers were to join any of the ruling political parties, he said.

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MACC’s GE14 operation rooms a timely move, says C4

Source: Free Malaysia Today

Free Malaysia Today

Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism chief Cynthia Gabriel say the public will now not have problems finding right avenue to report electoral malpractice.

PETALING JAYA: An anti-graft NGO supports the move by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to set-up 24-hour operation centres for the 14th general election (GE14).

The Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) said this in a statement today in response to an announcement by MACC chief commissioner Dzulkifli Ahmad on Tuesday.

He had revealed plans to establish round-the-clock operation rooms in each state to monitor corruption and abuse of power for GE14, and will be ready to take in reports of violations of the Elections Act and the MACC Act.

“The operation rooms are an extremely welcome move by the MACC towards building institutions that prevent electoral malpractice.

“However, we are concerned that if the centres are poorly publicised and underutilised by the public, the efforts may be in danger of turning into a mere publicity stunt,” C4 executive director Cynthia Gabriel said.  Read more

DAP: New army camp being built in Hisham’s constituency

Source: Free Malaysia Today

Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR: DAP’s Kluang MP Liew Chin Tong today accused Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein of lying when he denied that an army camp was being built in his Sembrong constituency in Johor.

Liew said the camp was under construction in Paloh, a state seat within the Sembrong constituency.

“He is clearly lying because there is an army camp being built in his constituency,” he said in response to Hishammuddin’s denial that army camps were being built for political purposes.

Hishammuddin, who is also an Umno vice-president, was quoted yesterday as saying that if the allegation was true, he would have ordered an army camp to be built in Sembrong.

“As the defence minister, I would do a camp in my area first,” he told reporters at the opening of the refurbished Kompleks Mutiara Armada navy camp.  Read more

Raw deal for Malaysia’s opposition, says US report

Source: FMT News

The human rights report criticises government control of EC and traditional media. Pic from the FMT News.

The human rights report criticises government control of EC and traditional media. Pic from the FMT News.

PETALING JAYA: The US State Department has criticised the Malaysian government for practices that it says placed opposition political parties at a disadvantage in elections.

The department’s Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2016 mentions, among other things, Putrajaya’s control over traditional media outlets and its grip on the Election Commission (EC).

The report on Malaysia said “irregularities” in the record of votes had affected the fairness of elections in the country, as had issues of gerrymandering.

It pointed to NGO reports in June 2016 that the EC had moved the names of more than 100,000 voters throughout the country to neighbouring constituencies without informing the voters or obtaining parliamentary approval.

The EC was reported as saying then that the voters were moved to polling centres closer to them to ease the voting process.

However, the US report said, the over-representation of some constituencies affected the 2013 general election, with many of Barisan Nasional’s victories coming in more heavily weighted rural areas. Read more

Bersih: Correct Johor Menteri Besar’s ‘dubious’ voter details

Source: FMT News

maria-chin-khaled-nordin

Bersih leader Maria Chin Abdullah and Johor Menteri Besar Khaled Nordin – Pic from FMT News

PETALING JAYA: Electoral reform group Bersih 2.0 says the “dubious” voter details of Johor Menteri Besar Khaled Nordin must be corrected, following submissions by the state Pakatan Harapan yesterday of hundreds of suspicious voter details.

According to Johor Pakatan Harapan, Khaled’s voter details list his address as that of his office, not his residence – where 13 other voters, including his son, Akmal Saufi, are also registered.

Khaled reportedly changed the address on his MyKad to his office address last year.

In a statement issued today, Bersih chief Maria Chin Abdullah called the move “an outright manipulation of the electoral roll and obvious abuse of power”. Read more

DAP Sabah calls on EC to explain voter registration anomaly

Source: The Borneo Post

KOTA KINABALU: DAP Sabah organising secretary Henry Shim has urged the Election Commission (EC) to provide an explanation over a recent complaint on voters registration that went viral on Facebook.

The said complaint arose when a resident by the name of Achmadi bin Abdul Libad found that his name was duplicated in the EC website when checking on his electoral voter status. The duplicated name, however, was registered through a police ID and not a normal IC, and the duplicated names were registered at different constituencies, but with the same date of birth.

“This is ridiculous! If the said registrations are proven to be from the same person, how could the same person appears to be in two different constituencies? If such system error appears to be within the EC’s voters registration system, how many such similar cases are already within the community of Malaysians? This has again raised the question that must be answered by the EC to the public, was it an administration snafu, or was there a conspiracy behind this?” he asked

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Kit Siang: Why is EC chair abandoning predecessor’s redelineation plans?

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Map of redelineated constituencies on display at the Selangor EC office September 15, 2016. Voters have one month to file complaints, if any. — Picture by Kamles Kumar

Map of redelineated constituencies on display at the Selangor EC office September 15, 2016. Voters have one month to file complaints, if any. — Picture by Kamles Kumar

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 20 ― DAP’s Lim Kit Siang questioned Election Commission (EC) chairman Datuk Mohd Hashim Abdullah today on why he was not following his predecessor’s electoral redelineation plans for smaller constituencies.

Lim cited former EC chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof, who was reported as saying in a November 2, 2014 report by national newswire Bernama that “a constituency with a large number of voters, more than 100,000, has to be divided into two, for example, so that there are reasonable numbers of voters in both”.

“Can Mohd Hashim explain why he had jettisoned his predecessor, Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof’s redelineation plan to abide by the Constitution and the democratic principle of ‘one man, one vote’ by ensuring that there will be no super-size parliamentary constituencies exceeding 100,000 votes?” Lim said in a statement.

Abdul Aziz had reportedly said in 2014 that a redelineation exercise was not meant to benefit any particular political party, but to facilitate voters and to enable constituents to get good service from their elected representatives. He had highlighted Batu and Segambut as federal constituencies in Kuala Lumpur that are small in size, but have a large number of voters.

Lim has previously urged the EC to redraw 13 “super” parliamentary constituencies that have more than 100,000 registered voters under the current redelineation exercise, seven of which are in Pakatan-held Selangor. Read more

A class action against EC needs to be advised — JD Lovrenciear

Source: Malaysiakini

BY JD LOVRENCIEAR

The 53rd Merdeka Day celebration came with a mixture of mirth and gall.

The hope inspired by the Agong granting Dr Mahathir Mohamad an audience offering the long-awaited opportunity for 1.4 million subjects of His Majesty to deposit their patriotic love and concern for beloved Malaysia is comparable to fragrant mirth as it filled social media with hopes for a better Malaysia.

The gall that also came long was the breaking news about an Election Commission (EC) that may be compromising the very constitutional and cardinal rules that promise the onward building and safeguarding of a democratic nation.

Opposition leaders have been hopping mad, screaming out that they smell a nasty plot in the delineation exercise drawn by the EC.

Malaysiakini conducted an in-depth analysis of the re-structured constituencies and have published their findings independently (‘How EC is tying the opposition’s hands’ by Nigel Aw & Kow Gah Chie; Saturday, Sept 17).

One need not be a political scientist to recognise that there is an agenda at work in the EC’s exercise. Fundamentally, it raises several concerns which even the honourable civil society platform, Bersih 2.0, has raised.

Both Maria Chin Abdullah and her dedicated predecessor, Ambiga Sreenevasan, have registered their urging for clean and just elections. The vanguard and guardian of democracy, the EC must ensure that a general election embraces and transparently showcases these fundamentals categorically demanded of any general election. Read more

How EC is tying the opposition’s hands

Source: Malaysiakini

Image taken from Malaysiakini

Image taken from Malaysiakini

The Election Commission (EC), after 13 years and three election cycles, on Thursday announced the commencement of a nationwide redelineation exercise.

Within hours, the opposition rained a torrent of criticism against the EC, accusing the commission of trying to engineer the redelineation in BN’s favour.

Much of these criticisms were focused on Selangor, where the number of voters in the parliamentary seats were dramatically altered.

Malaysiakini looked at the patterns to see if there were any merits to claims that the EC was up to no good. Read more

Sabah Bersih offers to aid challenges against new state seats

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The Election Commission (EC) is seeking to change the names of 12 parliamentary seats and 34 state constituencies nationwide. — Pix by Kamles Kumar

The Election Commission’s proposed redelineation of federal and state seats. — Pix by Kamles Kumar

PENAMPANG, Sept 16 — Bersih 2.0 will assist voters in Sabah with legitimate objections against the 13 newly created state seats, said chairman Beverly Joeman.

Joeman said that the state chapter of Bersih 2.0 has consistently objected to the addition of the 13 new state seats, but must respect the decision made by the majority of Sabah elected representatives at the last assembly sitting.

“We will be studying the new seats closely and will assist any party or members of the public who want to make objections in their constituencies based on the Constitution,” she said, adding that their team has already found several irregularities in the new delineation that could be construed as gerrymandering.

Among the examples pointed out by the electoral watchdog was the shifting of several voting areas indiscriminately and without knowledge or consent of the voters themselves.

They cited the new Tanjung Dumpil seat in Putatan, Tulid in Pensiangan and the voting station of Lido, in Kepayan, which was moved to Luyang, among the issues. She also said that the group took issue with the Election Commission’s public display of the delineation, saying that the map was not detailed enough to properly depict the new boundaries. Read more