Snap to compile evidence of phantom voters


By Joseph Tawie, FMT

KUCHING: Sarawak National Party (Snap) has set up a committee to collect information from voters and members on phantom voters who were said to be very rampant in the recently concluded state election.

Speaking to FMT, its president Edwin Dundang said: “Snap is very concerned with these new phenomena of phantom voters because they make a mockery of democratic process.

“We have set up a committee to collect information and details and then will submit a report to the Election Commission for its attention and necessary action.

“The committee will be headed by Paul Kadang,” Dundang said, adding that he knew that there were various ways on how phantom voters had been registered in the electoral rolls.

“We have noticed this, and in most cases the registration of phantom voters was carried out without the knowledge of the Election Commission.

“However, there are certain cases in which the registration cannot be made without the conniving of the Election Commission.

“And in every case, it is always to the disadvantage of the opposition,” he said.

On the possible use of biometric system as proposed by the EC, Dundang questioned how the system will really improve the efficiency of the EC and at the same time to eliminate double voting, especially in many polling stations in the rural areas where there were no electricity and internet services.

“I am at a loss how the commission is going to do it,” he said, pointing out that Snap prefered the use of indelible ink.

Before the March 2008 general election, the Election Commission had been talking about the use of indelible ink to prevent double voting and had, in fact, ordered about RM2 million worth of the ink.

It was, however, scrapped in the eleventh hour of the election, citing security as the reason.

Snap’s future

Earlier talking to the press after chairing Snap’s monthly meeting, Dundang said he might not seek re-election in the party’s triennial delegates meeting in August as he wants young and fresh people to take over the leadership of the party.

“We have many young and capable leaders who can take over the party,” he added.

Dundang believed that Snap would return to its past glory one day and play a dominant role after re-organising of its structure and branches throughout the state.

“I know Snap, being a local party, will one day play an important role in Sarawak politics once again with the support of young and dedicated people,” he said.

On its process of recruiting members, Dundang reminded them that community leaders and councillors should not be recruited as it is against the law.

Quoting the ‘Community Chiefs and Headmen Ordinance 2004’, Dundang said under Section 8 it prohibited a person who is appointed a chief or headman to hold any post in a political party; or be appointed a councillor in a local authority.