Press Statement: 2nd May, 2013
VIOLATIONS STILL REPORTED 4 DAYS TO POLLING DAY
On the 13th day of observation, PEMANTAU continues to receive and is expected to receive more reports of violations of code of conduct, political violence and various other unprofessional conducts towards polling day.
PEMANTAU observers have experienced mild form of harassment and intimidation throughout the campaigning period. In a Barisan Nasional ceramah in P097 Rawang on 30/4/2013, PEMANTAU observers had complained of obstruction to their duties from Barisan Nasional supporters and speakers, mainly questioning their intent and motives.
Basic standards of professional ethics and election law were flouted rampantly and it would appear to suggest that such flagrant flouting of the codes and law are acceptable by candidates of both political divide. Treating, undue influence and character assassination were demonstrated by both Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat, however there were instances of bribing, racist statements and vote-buying by Barisan Nasional candidates. The most unacceptable scare tactic was demonstrated by Barisan Nasional, where the manipulation and threat to native customary rights of indigenous peoples were documented from the media in East Malaysia.
Speeches, often racist and amounting to ill-will and hostility were steadily reported by PEMANTAU. In Rawang, one speaker had made racist statements claiming that DAP, likened to a Chinese party, had chased out the Malays from Kuala Lumpur during May 13. The speaker had also expressed disgust to DAP and all its campaign materials, especially when Malays supporters were hoisting the DAP flag during the tumultuous period.
PEMANTAU noted that the failure to monitor and control supporters by parties in many instances whereby supporters had resorted to physical violence, including sexual assaults of two women as pointed out on previous occasion by BERSIH 2.0, and sabotaging opposing party/ies events. In P152 Kluang, PEMANTAU reported a group of men, allegedly from Barisan Nasional had mounted loud speakers from close proximity to the ceramah site and were blasting music and loud recordings throughout the night in an attempt to disrupt opposition’s ceramah. The most frequent and popular means of disruption was reported to be loud revving motorcycles in most ceramahs.
Through media monitoring, PEMANTAU documented several alarming incidents. For instance, caretaker Prime Minister Najib had made announcements of approved and/or due approval projects to the voters. In Johor, caretaker Prime Minister Najib announced that his government had approved the construction of a third campus of Foon Yew Independent High School in Johor.
In Penang, Najib attempted to woo voters by resorting to campaigning on basic necessities, particularly education. Najib had reportedly announced that his government had agreed to elevate the status of Han Chiang College to a University College. Najib went on to promise that a funding of RM1 million through Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia will be endowed to the institution, should his appeal for mandate is answered.
PEMANTAU hereby put serious questions as to the legality and consequences of Najib’s announcements to the voters. It is pertinent to note that at the time the statements were made, the caretaker government was not in the capacity and unqualified to approve and/or promise to approve any projects affecting the people’s interests and resources.
On this note, PEMANTAU hereby transmits a strong and clear message to all participants of GE13 to stop belittling and manipulating basic necessities of the people, which should rightly be provided in the first place regardless of GE13. PEMANTAU condemns the manipulation of basic necessities by candidates and their promises which by and large seems to be qualified and conditional upon votes.
PEMANTAU calls upon all participants of GE13 to adhere to the highest standard of ethics and professionalism as respectable future leaders. We call upon the voters to come forth on polling day to vote with their free will and not cower in fear of threats of instability and riots.
PEMANTAU Pilihan Raya Rakyat comprises of:-
Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections 2.0 (BERSIH 2.0);
Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections (MAFREL); and
For further enquiries, please contact the BERSIH 2.0 secretariat at
03-77723275 or 019-4380428