Behind the Election Commission’s constant denials proves are piling up on the illegal mass production of Mykads which are distributed to illegal migrants especially in Sabah. A Sabahan politician from SAPP Yong Teck Lee spewed the beans where there are few `saints’ in the debate on illegal migrants being granted these manufactured citizenship:
Queuing up for ‘free’ MyKads
Sabah is vital to Umno’s no holds barred fight to stay in Putrajaya and any means including issuing free MyKads is seen as legit.
KOTA KINABALU: History is repeating itself in Sabah as the 13th general election looms and the alleged no-holds-barred battle by the ruling Barisan Nasional government to ensure re-election goes into overdrive.
Former Sabah chief minister Yong Teck Lee said that the state BN leaders are turning a blind eye to the ongoing issuance of MyKads to foreign citizens as the government mounts a campaign to register all illegal immigrants in the country.
The Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) president said it is impossible that Umno, Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (Upko), Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS), Gerakan and MCA leaders are not aware of the ongoing issuance of MyKads to unqualified foreigners.
“It is Umno’s selfishness and PBS’ collusion with Umno that the issuance of MyKads and registration of phantom voters has re-emerged,” he said in a statement issued here.
He said Upko president Bernard Dompok’s assertion that the Election Commission must accept the registration of voters based on ICs/MyKads issued by National Registration Department (NRD), shows that the deeper problem is not registration of voters but illegal issuance of MyKads to foreigners that is ultra vires the constitution.
Yong reminded that in the last parliament, Dompok’s National Integrity Parliamentary Select Committee tried to investigate the issue but government officers refused to attend his meetings.
“This was contempt of parliament but none of the officers bothered and Dompok, a senior federal minister and BN component head, had to dissolve the committee.
“This is the reality of Umno power today,” he said.
Yong pointed out that in the 1999 Likas election petition, former PBS leader Dr Chong Eng Leong highlighted the issue and the court judge found that that there were indeed phantom voters.
“The court finding was against the Election Commission, not against me. I was a victim, not a cause of the phantom voters.
“Chong’s PBS witnesses had testified clearly that it was Umno operatives, not Yong Teck Lee or SAPP, who were responsible for false ICs,” he said.
Yong claimed that the evidence of phantom voters and fake ICs were given to Chong by those in Umno and, this led to the fastest election petition trial in Malaysian history.
The case made history as a parliamentary by-election was called by the Election Commission despite a declaration by then Parliament Speaker that there was no vacancy.
“Chong conveniently and consistently ignored the existence of phantom voters in other places like Kawang, a seat once held by Osu Sukam.
“Another Umno leader who has a lot to answer for and who was and is the driving force of the then Umno Task Force on pengundi luar, is Karim Ghani,” he added.
Yong went on to stress that to rid the electoral rolls of phantom voters, the EC must first admit that such a problem exists.
“But if the Election Commission pretends that there is no problem, then there is no hope of solution.
“In the 1980s, during the PBS state government era, the then Election Commission secretary Abdul Rashid notoriously claimed that talk of phantom voters was ‘coffee shop talk’,” recalled Yong.
Yong said that at the time, with the help of Institute of Development Studies (IDS) headed by Jeffrey Kitingan, he (Yong) headed an Electoral Rolls Committee that scrutinised the entire electoral rolls and found 33,000 cases of duplicate and triplicate ICs in the Sabah electoral rolls.
“Some genuine locals found that their IC numbers are shared by strangers, including the embarrassing case of the missing “German boy” who somehow also got registered as a voter,” he recalled.
This, he said, was because the legal mechanisms to protect the integrity of the rolls are available in the Federal Constitution, the Elections Act 1958, the Elections (Registration of Electors) Regulations 2002 and the National Registration Act 1959.
“The first step is to remove the disease by taking action against the Umno operatives who conspire in issuing dubious citizenship documents to foreigners,” he said.
Yong said this would not be unprecedented as in 1995 Samsul Alang, Jabar Khan, Ajkan Ali, Bandi Bilo and other operatives were detained under “Ops Kenal” under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for the manufacturing of fake identity cards.
This was followed by the Regularisation Exercise under the auspices of the National Security Council in 1996 that allowed genuine foreign workers to remain and the forcible deportation and voluntary exodus of illegals.
Yong sees that as the tipping point in Sabah’s long standing efforts to solve the illegals problems and the existence of phantom voters.
The issue of fake ICs and phantom voters has re-surfaced in recent years with the most outstanding case being of one Jerome Majimbon, a foreigner, in Inanam, sharing the address of Sepanggar MP Eric Majimbun.
Last week, a Taiwanese investor complained that a MyKad had been issued in his name to defraud him.
“In Sandakan, Tawau, Semporna, Lahad Datu, adults are said to be queuing up to collect their MyKads and employers find that their foreign workers suddenly possess MyKads,” Yong noted.