EC: Nothing untoward in police presence

The Election Commission has refuted allegations that the strong police presence in the city here was an indication that there would be phantom voters on polling day of the Kuala Terengganu by-election.

Election Commission deputy-secretary (operations) Datuk Nordin Che Ngah said only those who were listed in the gazetted electoral roll would be allowed to cast their votes.

“Political parties are always making this (sort of) allegation. We have repeatedly explained that it would be next to impossible for non-registered voters to take part in the by-election.

“At the same time, anyone who is registered can vote irrespective of where he or she comes from. This person is not a phantom voter as he or she is given the right under the law to vote,” he said at a briefing for the media Sunday.

He said based on previous experience, those that political parties accuse of being phantom voters were just outstation supporters who come to show their support for certain candidates or parties.

PAS has claimed that the strong presence of police force in the city since late Saturday was an indication that Barisan Nasional would be bringing in phantom voters on polling day.

Speakers at a PAS ceramah (political address) in Ladang on Saturday night had alleged that the police, who had set up observation posts in various key points in the city, were there to protect “outsiders being brought in.”

Nordin said the number of registered voters for the Jan 17 by-election was 80,229 — 96 fewer from the electoral roll used in the last general election in March last year.

He said the fewer voters were due to the deaths of some of the registered voters, and a change of voting constituency in others.