James Masing reportedly (see below) rebutted the claim by MEO-Net that payments made to voters was rampant in the 10th Sarawak State Elections-a claim where his party colleague Joseph Mauh corroborated by saying that every candidate-included Masing, invovled in! And strange as it is the politician does not see any contradiction between his denial and his party’s filing of an election petition against the winner in Pelagus on account of violation of the Election Offenses Act 1954.He challenged the loser in the Tamin seat to file a similar election petition-forgetting that few election petitions could be upheld by the election court which adopted a strange policy on deciding on whether there were violations. The policy is: only if the violation affects who the winner is-then the petition can be upheld. Practically you can violate the law to the point before the tipping point eg vote buying, threaten voters, impersonation of voters etc, and get away with it! This is a travesty of justice as according to the Election Offenses Act 1954 any violation even on a single voter on 1 occasion is a violation which warrant the full weight of punishment! Under such a self-proclaimed court practice election petitions cannot be hoped to penalise the culprits-as few cases of complaints have ever been upheld by the Malaysian election court! So: no election petitions does not mean that there are no complaints!!!
Since he does not admit to vote buying but his party vice-president admit to paying voters MEO-Net will release even more damning evidence of vote buying this Sunday(May 29) in a Penang talk at 8.00pm, at its office in D’ Space (62 Weld Quay, 3rd floor, Penang). The evidences will challenge voters to decide if the claim that the payments are just for transport subsidy! All Malaysians who are against corruption in elections are welcome to turn up. Admission is free. Enq.013-5900339.
Masing slams ‘wild allegations’ of vote buying
Posted on May 28, 2011, Saturday
KUCHING: Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president Dato Sri Dr James Jemut Masing yesterday rubbished so-called reports of vote buying in Tamin as “wild allegations”.
“If indeed there was (vote buying), as alleged, why didn’t they file election petition for vote buying?” he said when contacted.
Masing was commenting on a news portal’s report that Malaysian Election Observation Network (MEO-Net) had evidence, including a short video recording, of cash being distributed to voters in Tamin.
Tamin is one of the eight seats won by PRS, a state Barisan Nasional (BN) component member, in the recent election.
Meanwhile, Tamin assemblyman Joseph Mauh Ikeh also denied he had used money to influence constituents.
The money spent during the election, he said, was to pay election workers and transportation expenses.
“We do use money but it is to pay those people who work for us during the election, and we also need money to pay for transport, which included the boats for us to move around. I don’t think this is wrong,” he said.
Although it has been more than a month since the state election, polls watchdog MEO-Net reportedly said it has found evidence to show that vote buying was rampant during the campaign period.
MEO-Net coordinator Ong Boon Keong also released a short video recording, which was allegedly shot on the verandah of Rumah Unban Anak Endu at Tenting Terentang in Nanga Selangau, under the Tamin constituency.
Tamin was won by BN through Mauh, who obtained 4,998 votes, a 1,292-majority over PKR Mengga Mikui.
So far, the only election filed was by PRS last Friday to nullify the result of the contest for Pelagus.
PRS claimed that money politics was involved during the election campaign there — the only seat the party lost.
State election director Datu Takun Sunggah, when contacted yesterday, said any reports or allegations of vote buying must be made through the proper channels.