PORT DICKSON — Oct. 12, 2018: The Election Reforms Committee (ERC) feels that several things that happened in the by-election campaign here involving Pakatan Harapan candidate Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim should not have been allowed.
Committee chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman identified the issues as free meals, ministers campaigning by making promises and the presence of Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail who introduced herself as the deputy prime minister.
“There were two ministers who came here to campaign and making promises which should not have occurred. They should only make the announcement or promise outside campaigning hours.
“Then, there were free meals provided by non-governmental organisations or corporate bodies which organised the functions on behalf of the candidates, that is not allowed and is an offence under the election regulations,” he said at a media conference.
Rashid described the action of PKR president Wan Azizah campaigning for Anwar, who is also her husband, by introducing herself as the DPM as something inappropriate.
The ERC had sent 11 observers to monitor proceedings and found that the EC was facing obstacles in its work.
“The EC does not have the power to investigate on its own several alleged violations of the election regulations such as the misuse of government facilities and the giving of gifts to voters and so on,” observed Rashid.
Rashid agreed that new regulations need to be drafted to avoid resignations by MPs without reasonable cause.
Rashid, a vice-president of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysi, was the EC secretary from 1979 until 1995, deputy chairman from 1997 until 2000 and chairman from 2000 until 2008.
The government announced the establishment of the ERC on August 16 to review the election system and regulations. — Bernama