The Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (BERSIH 2.0) refers to the decision of the Registrar of Societies (ROS) to invalidate the postponement of UMNO’s internal election by 18 months and requiring the party to hold it as soon as possible. The timing of the ROS decision, immediately after UMNO withdrew its support for PM Muhyiddin Yassin, leads us to believe that it was politically motivated.
This decision of the ROS is the latest in its long history of politically-motivated actions to block registration of new parties, coalitions and NGOs, and interfere in internal affairs of parties or societies registered under them, at the behest of its master, the Ministry of Home Affairs. This is another example of abuse of the Executive branch’s power to target opponents.
BERSIH 2.0 calls for the oversight of political parties to be placed under an independent Election Commission (EC) or a new election management body called Election Enforcement Commission (EEC) that regulates political parties and carries out enforcement responsibilities under a new Political Parties Act and the election laws.
This would be consistent with Recommendation No.11 of the Electoral Reform Committee’s (ERC), that calls for the registration of political parties be placed under the EC, in its final report which was submitted to PM Muhyiddin Yassin in August 2020.
BERSIH 2.0 commissioned a research report entitled “Three is better than one – Institutional reforms for Electoral Management in Malaysia” that proposed this and other recommendations to strengthen the oversight of elections and political parties. The report can be downloaded here – https://www.bersih.org/download/bersih-policy-research-institutional-reforms-for-electoral-management/
Statement issued by:
The Steering Committee of Bersih 2.0