Web of lies dangles EC’s ‘independence’

Articleelection campaign-kedah

Isn’t it a mockery that objections against the EC’s proposed re-delineations are heard by the EC?

Ravinder Singh, The Heat Malaysia

Opportunity strikes but once. That golden opportunity to defend the “independence” of the EC struck when former Chairman of the EC Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman coolly and proudly admitted publicly when he joined Perkasa in November 2013 that during his watch, he had made sure the BN would always win.

Now, that was from the horse’s mouth. He had led the EC in managing six of the 13 general elections (until his retirement), as well as four re-delineation exercises.

Neither the EC, the PM nor any other ministers took this opportunity to deny Abdul Rashid’s affirmative statement.

Had anyone of them done so, they would have been saying that Abdul Rashid was lying. Hence total silence, and by that silence, every one of them confirmed the truth of Abdul Rashid’s public confession.

Having confirmed Abdul Rashid’s damning statement, none of them has any moral standing to deny that the ongoing re-delineation exercise is in fact a gerrymandering exercise, a continuation of Abdul Rashid’s mission, or jihad.

Abdul Rashid’s confession is supported by acts of the government which had, under the present leadership, declared that it would defend Putrajaya at all costs, even with broken bones and crushed bodies. It could make such outrageous claims as it not only has the EC under its thumb, but has also been providing tools to the EC for gerrymandering purposes.

First of all, the de facto head of the EC is not its Chairman but the Prime Minister as the EC is in the PM’s Department and all delineations have to be approved by him before being sent to Parliament for rubber stamping. Will he approve anything not in his interests?

Parliament provided gerrymandering tools to the EC by making constitutional changes. In 1957, the difference between the number of voters in urban/rural constituencies was set at not more than 15 percent. This was changed to 33.33 percent in 1962 and finally in 1973 it became a vague “approximately equal”, which can be anything at the sole discretion of the EC.

Thus, we have cases like 150,439 voters in Damansara which is 4.05 times that of Sabak Bernam’s 37,126. So, in the eyes of the EC “four is approximately equal to one”, something even a kindergarten child will not agree with, but which the public is told to believe is fair and just.

With the popular vote still going down, something more was needed to fix the decline.

Gerrymandering up to this stage had been based on smart guesses, and this had reached its limits. The EC now needed to break the secrecy of the votes and this had to be done without raising suspicions and protests.

The ultimate tool to facilitate gerrymandering with accuracy was then handed to the EC in the form of an amendment to the vote counting process. By counting votes in the very room they are cast, under the excellent pretext of determining the results faster, the EC could now easily, and with certainty, know how small groups of voters, i.e. 200 to 800, had voted. “Secrecy” of the votes under this counting system has become a farce.

Read more here