Thursday, May 14, 2015

Voters missing from S'wak electoral roll

11:50PM May 13, 2015
By Vernon Kedit
Betong PKR division did a voter verification exercise last weekend, on May 1 to May 3.

The exercise was to help voters check and verify their voting status.

Volunteers from Kuala Lumpur and Kuching came along and set up counters in the town areas to assist voters to check their status.

This exercise was necessary as Betong PKR discovered that there are many discrepancies when comparing the voter lists of 2013 with the latest voter list of 2014 available.

We discovered that 644 new names were added to the new voter list of the Layar state constituency (N31) for 2014.

In a constituency of 8,838 voters, 644 new names is an increase of more than 15 percent! That is a lot of newly registered voters within less than a year!

Some of these 644 names could be genuine newly registered voters, or voters who had transferred their voting addresses back to Layar.

However, we will not discount that some could be phantom voters, and so PKR is now aggressively checking for any strange names appearing in the localities of 28 polling districts in Layar.

We also discovered that 322 names that were voting in the 2013 General Election list in Layar have been removed and now do not appear in the latest 2014 list.

When we checked these 322 names against the Election Commission portal's online registration, we found that 109 voters had been transferred out of Layar.

Some were moved to neighbouring constituencies like Bukit Saban, Saribas or Engkilili. Some were moved to far away places like Baram and some even to West Malaysia!

We need to verify that these voters had indeed asked to be transferred or if they were moved without their knowledge by the Election Commission.

The balance of 213 names from the 322 names that were removed from the latest 2014 list were listed as 'Record Not Found'.

These people are presumed dead, but can there have been so many deaths within a year in Layar? Or could some of them have been de-registered and removed off the voting list without their knowledge?

The red flag and biggest alarm bell was when we compared the 2013 figures with 2014, we found that the difference in total of voters is only two new voters, but surprisingly hundreds of voters within N31 Layar have been moved from their localities to other localities situated miles and hours away.

This would be devastating for many voters as they would not be able to cast their vote on polling day if they did not have transportation to go to their new polling stations, or are not in time to reach their new polling stations before balloting is officially closed at 12 noon.

We cannot explain these anomalies but we are checking to make sure that these voters who have been moved or de-registered are aware of their voting status so that the we can take appropriate action to remedy the situation.

I urge all voters in N31 Layar to either contact me on facebook to check their voting status or to go directly to the Election Commission website, and check their status online here.

VERNON KEDIT is Sarawak PKR information chief
~ Malaysiakini

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