'Transplanted' voter cries foul

Andrew Ong (Mkini)
Nov 13, 07

Following the massive rally held over the weekend to press for electoral reforms, a Kuala Lumpur-based lawyer decided to check her voter status this morning on the Election Commission (EC) website.

The lawyer, who only wanted to be identified as Ivy, was surprised by the result.
She is now a registered voter in Johor Bharu even though she is supposed to be a voter in Seputeh, Kuala Lumpur.
According to the EC website, the lawyer, who is in her 30s, is a voter for the Stulang state seat and the Johor Bharu parliamentary seat.
Ivy said she had voted twice in the Seputeh constituency in 1995 and 1999 but did not vote in the last elections in 2004. She had never changed her particulars with the EC.
“I laughed when I first heard about this nonsense but I didn’t think it would happen to me. Now, I’m just fuming mad,” she said when contacted.
Now, she is worried that someone might have voted on her behalf during the last general election. Ivy emailed a complaint to the EC today and is hoping for a reply soon.
Cases such as Ivy’s have often been cited as examples of how the EC cannot ensure the credibility of the electoral rolls, a charge which the commission vehemently denies.
Police report
In a related development, newspaper editor-turned-blogger Ahirudin Attan has lodged a police report and a official complaint with the Perak EC over his dubious voter status.
Ahirudin, who has never registered as a voter, found out in September that he was a voter in the Simpang Pulai state constituency under the Gopeng parliamentary constituency since 1999.
The Malacca-born and currently Selangor-based blogger claimed that he had never been a Gopeng resident and had embarked on a mission to unravel the mystery behind his voter status.
Following the EC’s failure to furnish him with sufficient details, Ahirudin had on Nov 3 visited the Perak EC office in Ipoh where he discovered his ‘registered address’ according to their database.
“It was a shoplot selling stationery. I spoke to the shop owner and he had no idea how I could have been registered to that address,” he said.
Attack on DAP strongholds?
Ahirudin said he would urge the EC in a letter to lodge a police report on his case to prove that the commission is innocent.
“For every complaint, the EC should lodge a police report as its integrity is at stake, so the police would be obliged to investigate. We are not talking about incompetency but fraud,” he added.
The most notable recent case of ‘voter transplant’ was in the Ipoh Timur parliamentary constituency which saw a sudden ‘growth’ of 8,463 new voters.
This included the wholesale relocation 2,000-odd of mostly pro-government voters from a neighbouring consituency.
Both Seputeh and Ipoh Timur are opposition strongholds held by DAP.