EC chief, deputy admit they ‘could have been’ Umno members


Abdul Aziz can’t remember when and where he became an Umno member 

(The Malaysian Insider) – Both the Election Commission (EC) chairman and deputy chairman have admitted that they could have been Umno members a long time ago, but stressed that it did not affect their ability to carry out their professional duties.

Chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof and his deputy Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar took great pains to point out that it (being Umno members) happened a long time ago, and that they were inactive members, having not paid any fees or attended any party meetings.

“I can’t remember when and where I once became an Umno member, anyone could have put my name in after I graduated from university in the 1970s.

“I can’t even remember which branch (I was an Umno member in) because after I finished my studies I lived in several areas — Segambut, Selayang and Ampang. So if anyone had named me (as an Umno member) I don’t know which branch,” Abdul Aziz told Sinar Harian.

Wan Ahmad confirmed that he was an Umno member, but like Abdul Aziz, he too claimed he could not remember which Umno branch he was registered in.

When asked whether he was still an Umno member, Wan Ahmad said: “I don’t know and have never bothered to find out. I am not a politician, I am a government servant and this has stayed till this day. I am speaking the truth.”

Wan Ahmad stressed that all government servants were barred from being active members in any political party, and that they had to relinquish their government posts if they wanted to do so.

“I am still in service (as a government) servant) and that it proof that I am not an active (Umno) member,” he said.

Similarly, Abdul Aziz said that being an Umno member did not make him biased in any way when it came to running the EC.

“I’ve never felt tied down in all my years here (in the EC),” he said.

Both the EC chief and deputy chief were accused yesterday of being Umno members, with a senior PKR official alleging that he had evidence of their membership in the ruling party.

The duo have come under intense scrutiny in the past year over claims of fraud in election practices and the electoral roll as federal polls draw near.

“I know Aziz’s membership number and I have information on which branch Tan Sri Aziz and his deputy are from.

“This is the only EC in the world where its chief and his deputy are officially members of a party that contests elections,” Sinar Harian quoted PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution as saying.