Monday, January 13, 2014

‘EC did a con job, remove the Chairman’

‘EC did a con job, remove the Chairman’

The Election Commission must be independent and accepted by all parties.
KUALA LUMPUR: Former Temerloh MP Saifuddin Abdullah calls for the removal of the Election Commission (EC) Chairman; stressing that the EC needs to be independent and both divides of the political parties must be comfortable with the commission.
Speaking at the forum called ‘The Way Forward For Democracy in the Post GE13 Era’, that was held yesterday evening, Saifuddin said that some young Malaysians are cynical towards the country’s politics.
Other panelists in the forum were Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli and Professor in Political Science, Meredith Weiss. The forum was moderated by Masjaliza Hamzah from Center for Independent Journalism (CIJ).
Saifuddin, who was also the former deputy minister of higher education, said that post GE13, the concept of democracy among Malaysians is getting more matured and progressive.
He analogued the situation to two intertwined circles; with the left circle representing the hope for development and the right circle for democracy.
“In the development hope, Malaysians tend to discuss and urge for water, electricity and basic needs issues met.
“Where else in the democratic hope circle, Malaysians seek fairness, human rights, Bersih, lesser corruption and crime, and etc.
“More Malaysians are heading towards the democratic hope as compared to the development hope,” said Saifuddin.
Saifuddin also called upon the politicians to be bi-partisan and form more select committees to address issues on crime and education in the nation.
Above that he also advocated more freedom for the media and supported the recently held ‘Pencil Merah’ protest.
Structural changes needed
Meanwhile, political activist Hishamuddin Rais, who was among the panelists in the forum, called for  structural changes in the entire electoral system.
He echoed Saifuddin’s sentiments but went further saying that the EC is carrying out a con job and labelled the top two men in the EC as ‘bunch of jokers’.
He outrightly said that the EC cheated Malaysians during the GE13.
“We will never win with this same structure.
“Some of my friends were predicting it will be a hung parliament in GE 13 race, but my friend I tell you, we have the third world characteristics and there is no such thing of hung parliament,” said Hishamuddin.
Hishamuddin also slammed the EC in the manner they had handled the indelible ink during election day.
In citing countries like India, Pakistan and Venezuela, where the ink is applied after voting, he said here it was done before the ballot paper was provided.
Meanwhile he supported Saifuddin for having a democratic approach towards politics.
“If Umno follows my dear friend Saifuddin’s style, I am very sure PAS and PKR will tutup kedai,” said Hishamuddin; getting the crowd into a big laughter.


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