Caught distributing money for vote buying at last Sarawak state election!
Yellow Cards Campaign
To mobilise citizens into monitoring the coming 13th General Elections in Malaysia as a collective means to keep a close watch on electoral frauds, and to help clean up the messy elections in the country over time!
Subtitle: let all election violators tremble at their `boss’ this time!
- Citizens will be familiarized with 10 common malpractices/ violations/ irregularities in election administration and campaigns;
- When they observe a clear malpractice they would, where possible, at their personal decision, deliver a Yellow Card to the candidates/candidates agents/party agents/election administrators etc where the malpractice/s is identified on one side of the card, together with legal penalty where it applies; If face-to-face delivery is not possible/preferred, the card can be delivered later by other means eg sent via SMS, email, publicise in media or web sites, mailed to campaign office, Election Commission office, sent in together with other complaints etc.
- The candidates/agents are given opportunity to answer the accusation on the spot or later in writing;
- The delivery of the card will be done in public view and fully documented; Where the cards are not well received the video documentation of the delivery will be uploaded to public media eg You Tube to let the public judge the response from the accused candidate/agents/ administrators;
- Should the candidate/agents/administrators present reasons for their action the reasons will be evaluated by a panel of advisors of the monitoring team-and the accusation can be withdrawn if the reasons are found to be acceptable in terms of free and fair elections norms; They can also apologise and stop the practice to remove themselves from the score sheet-and they will be put under certain period of monitoring before that will take effect;
- Otherwise their name, face and the documented evidence will be publicized as a case of election violation in a name-and-shame exercise;
- The Yellow Cards score sheet will be publicized in web site as well as on a physical bill board where it is open to public view-like the death tolls caused by traffic accidents;
- The accumulated results will be released daily and also be presented to the party chiefs just ahead of the cooling period of election campaign, as a climax event for the Yellow Card campaign; a `Champion of election violations’ will be identified on individual and party basis ahead of the poll through our advisors panel as well as web polling(50:50);
- However the polling day violations will be added to the final report-which will be announced in a press conference soon after the polling day;
- 10 common election offences from election stakeholders
Government departments(police, directors of departments, chief secretary):
1- involve in party campaigning or bias towards parties
2- freedom to campaign restricted
3- unfair/bias media reports
4- abuses of government vehicles/buildings/personnel/programs/fund for party
5- vote buying
6- violence and intimidation
7- Compromise of voters rights (voter lists, disabled, women, phantom voters etc)
8- Not enforcing or selective enforcement against election violations
9- Unfair action during polling, counting, tallying and release of results;
10-Complaint handling unsatisfactory
1- Identify the target areas for monitoring; criteria: marginal states and seats;
Priority states: Sabah and Sarawak; for West Malaysian states: certain seats in Selangor, Kedah, Perak, Terengganu and Negeri Sembilan;
2- Recruitment and training– through public talks, road shows, over web site; in groups’ meetings, in media etc; Each volunteer team consist of a volunteer to present the card and also another person to document the presentation of the card; Each team may have more members to help out on contingencies;
3- The campaign will also receive public complaints of violations-but unless they are verified they will be tagged as unverified and displayed separately from those verified and given a yellow card; Preferably the yellow cards are given on the spot; but if that is not possible it can be given later-but still as a public event/in public locations;
4- The campaign period start from when the Parliament is dissolved-and last till the polling is finished; The campaign will be launched in the media(press conference) as well as in new media (video); monitors can participate for whatever extent they can afford-and registration ahead is needed;
5- A 24 hours secretariat will be set up in the capital to receive complaints and to update the score sheet of violations;
6- Monitor Team members may get a Yellow T-shirt, a yellow cap; a name tag, a whistle and certified copies of the official yellow cards-to prevent any abuse of the yellow cards by unrelated parties; They need to have a member who possess or able to access a camera in each team; Each monitor need to undergo a minimum of training before they are accepted;
7- The delivery of the Yellow Card can be fun and effective to deter the habitual violators at the same time; Make it a challenge to deliver at least 1 Yellow Card if you think the elections are not going right!
Preferably a consortium of non-partisan civil society bodies; All groups who agree to the above programs and objectives will be welcome to participate at all levels of the Yellow Card Campaign;
Funds will be kept to minimum –but where needed the steering committee consisting of reps of participating groups and committed individuals will organize some fund raising activities; The budget will cover mainly some secretariat expenses; Cameras will not be provided;
The participation is entirely voluntary and motivated primarily by the potential of this monitoring program to enable individuals and groups, to produce effective impact on the election/political culture in Malaysia, where much is needed to make it attain international norms of being a more credible election.
4 Criteria of success
We will judge the performance of the campaign on the following 4 criteria:
a- the level of participation and results of monitors;
b- the response from the candidates/parties
c- the response from the public-media included;
d- the response from the government, election administrators;
A preliminary report will be produced immediately after the poll to release the accumulated results and our interpretation of the results;
A final report will also be produced to document the entire campaign within a period after the election complaints/petitions are settled (max 6 months)
Enq-Ong BK 013-5900339
Participating groups: (The more the merrier!)