DAP in need of electoral reform?

DAP Johor

(fz.com) – Once again, voices calling for a reform of DAP’s electoral system are heard, following inconsistencies in the first and second round results in the recently concluded Johor party election.

Liew Chin Tong, who is the Kluang MP won unexpectedly and till today his victory remains a hot topic in the Chinese dailies with allegations that Dr Boo Cheng Hau was betrayed by his closest comrades.
Liew, who garnered the second lowest votes among fifteen elected state committee members, won the chairmanship in the second round polls after securing nine votes, beating Boo who garnered five votes.
Oriental Daily News quoted a source saying, victory was in Boo’s favour during the second round poll as he was confident of garnering nine votes from his close comrades.
However three of his close comrades defected to the other side at that the eleventh hour while another is believed to have abstained from voting, resulting in his defeat, the report said.
China Press, meanwhile named Bakri MP Er Teck Hwa, Stulang state assemblyman Chen Kah Eng, Yong Peng state assemblywoman Chew Peck Choo and S. Ramakrishnan as four state committee members in pro-Boo’s fraction who voted for Liew at the second round poll.
In addition, Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang’s aide Ng Sian Luan was said to have abstained from voting as she was torn between Boo, who is her long time comrade, and Kit Siang, her god brother.
While Oriental Daily and Sin Chew named Kit Siang’s influence as a pivotal factor to Liew’s triumph,China Press was told that, upon winning the first round contest, pro-Boo elected state committee members received phone calls from the leadership, persuading them to vote for Liew in the second round contest.
The top leadership’s persuasion with carrot and stick was said to have worked, causing the turn-about in the final results.
Meanwhile, Sin Chew Daily in its editorial criticised DAP’s electoral system as being “not democratic enough” looking at how less-popular Liew who won the election benefited from the system.
It urged the DAP leadership and all its members to ponder whether there was a need for an electoral reform.
“DAP had blamed unfair electoral systems and urged for an electoral reform when Pakatan Rakyat lost in the number of seats (to Barisan Nasional) albeit garnering the highest popular votes in last general election,”
“Now that similar outcome has surfaced in the Johor DAP election. Does it mean DAP should also change its electoral system to a direct vote system so as to underline progressiveness of DAP’s intra-party democracy?”
Kulai MP Teo Nie Ching, who is also the newly elected Johor DAP publicity secretary, argued in her column in China Press that there were pros and cons in both electoral systems and it was difficult to determine which was more democratic.