Ink mark or no, people can still vote

The Star
March 6, 2008

PUTRAJAYA: Those who have indelible ink on their fingers will not face any problem voting on Saturday, Election Commission secretary Datuk Kamaruzaman Mohd Noor said.
He said as the rule on the use of indelible ink had been scrapped, people who have had their fingers marked with the ink would not be prevented from voting.
EC chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman said on Tuesday that some irresponsible people had smuggled in indelible ink and had influenced villagers in Perlis, Kedah and Kelantan that they would not be allowed to vote if they did not have the ink mark on their fingers.
Stressing a point: Kamaruzaman gesturing as seen through a transparent ballot box during the press conference in Putrajaya.
Abdul Rashid said this was one of the reasons why the EC decided to call off the use of the ink on polling day.
Meanwhile, Barisan Nasional chairman Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the coalition was all for the use of the ink.
However, it accepted the EC’s decision to scrap its use.
“We cannot forget the election even if it cannot be done. An election is an election. We have to go ahead with the election,” he said attending gathering with the Chinese community in Kota Kinabalu yesterday.
Abdullah also dismissed opposition allegations that the move to scrap the use of indelible ink was to enable the Barisan to “cheat” in the polls.
“No such thing! We do not cheat! W e are successful not because we cheated, but because we work hard,” he said.
Meanwhile, MCA expressed its disappointment that the plan to use the ink was scrapped.
“The EC action will be politicised by the Opposition parties,” MCA headquarters elections operation director Tan Sri Wong See Wah told a press conference yesterday.
Wong said the MCA was outraged that there were people who smuggled in the indelible ink with the intention to create chaos on polling day.
MIC, however, lauded the EC for scrapping the use of indelible ink on polling day because it could have been misused by irresponsible quarters to derail the election process.
Umno Youth chief Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said the decision to scrap the use of the ink because of possible sabotage was an appropriate move.
He said it would make the general election transparent and clean.