I was at the Selangor Election Commission’s office this morning to check out the voter objection hearing process. I was shocked to find out a total of 354 voters from the Subang Parliamentary constituency (of which Kota Damansara, Paya Jaras and Bukit Lanjan are part of) were objected.
About half made it to today’s hearing and had their voting right reinstated. Of those present, some took emergency leave, some took unpaid leave, some postponed work and meeting arrangements and some came at the eleventh hour after receiving the EC’s PosLaju letter only yesterday.
The atmosphere in the room was tense and some felt confused as to why they were objected randomly. Nevertheless, every single one present were determined to make sure their right to vote will be reinstated in time for GE14.
After checking with some of them, I realised they were not randomly selected.
1. Majority of the objected voters had registered for change of voting address at the Post Office.
2. Almost all were Chinese.
3. They had applied to move to two seats in Subang Parliament ie. DUN Kota Damansara and DUN Paya Jaras – seats which UMNO has high stakes in retaining or wresting.
4. Majority of the Objectors (Pembantah) came from one address: No 10, Jalan Pekaka 8/3, Seksyen 8, Kota Damansara 47810 Petaling Jaya, Malaysia. (This is the address of UMNO Bahagian Subang)
The process was thankfully fast. Upon being called into a separate room, they were asked a few questions: How far is the community hall from your house, how far is a certain petrol station from your house etc.
The more time consuming process was the queue due to the numbers that turned up. Some waited for up to four hours for their turn.
On the Objector’s side (pembantah) side, only a handful, maybe 4 or 5 at most turned up. According to the EC’s rules and regulations on objecting voters, each pembantah is allowed to object up to 20 names. A total of 354 objected voters would mean at least 18 pembantahs should have been present to face the persons they objected. Where were they?
Also seen was a man and a lady with a child in charge of distributing RM100 bills ‘compensation’ to the objected voters present. Someone must have upfront RM35,400 cash to this person to pay on the spot!
Kudos to those present and who were determined not to leave until their rights to be a voter were reinstated.
Please inform those who may have received a letter from the EC either by registered post or PosLaju. There is nothing to be worried if they are called to the hearing. If you are unsure of your voting status, log onto http://daftarj.spr.gov.my/DAFTARJ and key in your IC number.
We know there is only one party who fears new voters more than anything. Don’t let them take away your fundamental rights!