Election Commission must revamp its IT capabilities and facilities to introduce automatic registration of voters or at least ensure that voters who are registered one month before the elections can vote at the 14GE

Yesterday in Sandakan, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak asked a rhetorical question, that if Malaysia is a failed state, whether King Salman of Saudi Arabia would have come to Malaysia with a large aircraft with a huge entourage?

If Salman’s entourage is an indication of the success of the countries visited by the Saudi King, it would mean that Indonesia is more than twice successful than Malaysia as Salman came to Malaysia with an entourage of 600 while he visited Indonesia with an entourage more than twice that number, i.e. 1,500!

It is of course silly to use the size of the Salman’s entourage as a yardstick to measure the success of the countries visited by the Saudi King.

I have never said Malaysia is a failed state. But unless we pull up our socks, we are in the trajectory of hurtling towards a failed and rogue state.

Only yesterday, the former United Nations Human Rights Commissioner, Navi Pillay, in a speech in Penang delivered indictment on Malaysia’s commitment to the rule of law when she said that the key difference between Malaysia and South Africa is that the former does not have an independent judiciary.

We are beginning to show more and more of the signs of a failed state, with one system or institution after another breaking down.

Late last night, Oratis Rx Sdn Bhd came out with a statement that the Public Services Department (PSD) did not issue a directive to it to stop supplying medicines and medical equipment to 750,000 pensioners and armed forces veterans, as the supply of medicines and medical equipment to pensioners and veterans after Feb. 27 was managed by the government and not by Oratis Rx Sdn. Bhd via the Electronic Medical Automation Supply System (e-MASS).

I see this OratisRx mess as a sign that the system of an efficient and trustworthy public service is breaking down and the country going down the road towards a failed state,

Oratis Rx Sdn Bhd said in a statement today, the supply of medicines and medical equipment to government retirees and veterans after Feb 27 was managed by the government and not via the Electronic Medical Automation Supply System (e-MASS).

The contract for supply of medicines and medical equipment to pensioners and ATM veterans via e-MASS, which began on Jan 26, 2012, expired on Jan 27, followed by an interim month-long extension till Feb. 27.

The very fact that it never occurred to anyone in PSD and the Health Ministry to notify pensioners and ATM veterans about the end of the e-MASS system, and to reduce their strain, problems and concerns as a result of the ending of the e-MASS system, is an indication of breakdown of an efficient public service system putting Malaysia in the trajectory towards a failed state.

What is the use of the Prime Minister’s promise to the 750,000 pensioners when launching the Government Pensioners’ Foundation in April 2015, when he told the pensioners to “come to me if you need help”?

Another example of the breakdown of an efficient public service system in Malaysia is the unheard-of “technical error” resulting in the unamended version of PAS President Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s private member’s bill motion on RUU355 appearing in the Parliament Order Paper for the resumption of Parliament on Monday.

Furthermore, I do not see my private member’s bill motion a bill to establish the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission in the Parliament Order Paper for the meeting from March 6 – April 6 although I had submitted it to Parliament within the requisite notice – as a result of a spate of police misconduct and abuses of power concerning deaths in custody and police brutalities.

May be MPs should focus on the question whether Malaysia are showing all the signs of getting into the trajectory leading to a failed and rogue state when they take part in the policy debate in Parliament on the Royal Address next week.

Another sign of Malaysia getting into the trajectory of a failed state is the Election Commission, with its Chairman, Datuk Seri Mohd Hashim Abdullah, complacently admitting that some 4.1 million Malaysians have yet to register as voters as of last month.

What is the Election Commission Chairman doing about such a deplorable state of affairs with regard to voter’s registration?

This is in fact proof that the Election Commission has failed in discharging its constitutional mandate to efficiently ensure that all eligible voters are registered on the electoral roll so that they could cast their vote during elections.

It is time that the Election Commission revamp its IT capabilities and facilities to introduce automatic registration of voters or at least ensure that voters who are registered one month before the elections can vote at the 14GE.

At present, only voters who are registered at least six months before the elections can only vote at the next GE.

This is most backward and regressive system when for over a decade, other countries have systems where voters can register today and vote tomorrow. When will the Election Commission in Malaysia catch up with the times as far as the voters’ registration is concerned?

If the Election Commission is incapable of revamping its IT capabilities and facilities to ensure that voters who register a month or even a week before elections can vote at the forthcoming general elections, it should send out a public appeal to the IT mavens in Malaysia for help.

Under the present backward IT system of the Election Commission, there are only 27 days left in March 2017 for eligible voters to register if they are to vote in the impending 14th General Elections, if it is held in July or more likely in September this year.

The majority of Malaysian voters wanted a change of Federal Government in Putrajaya in the 13th General Elections on May 5, 2013, but they missed the opportunity to bring about the first change of Federal government in Malaysian electoral history because the electoral system was so unfair and undemocratic that with 47% of the popular votes cast, the UMNO/Barisan Nasional coalition was able to win 60 per cent of the parliamentary seats and Datuk Seri Najib Razak could become the first minority Prime Minister (with support only from minority of the popular vote) in the nation’s history.

All Malaysian organisations, not only political parties should assume the national and patriotic duty to launch a voters’ registration drive in the next 27 days so that everyone can take part in the process to determine the nation’s future, including whether to change the Federal Government in Putrajauya – replacing the UMNO/Barisan coalition with Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu coalition – in the 14GE.

In fact, I will even urge every Malaysian individual to take it upon himself or herself to encourage a voters’ registration campaign in the next 27 days, bring about a change in mindset where the first question we ask when we meet friends or even strangers is not “Apa Khabar”,”Are you Well” or “Have you eaten” but “Have you ensured everybody in your family and close to you is registered as a voter?”

It is most shocking that over four million eligible voters have not registered themselves as voters.

This must be regarded as a national emergency, and the 27 days left in March 2017 must be regarded as the most important 27 days in the nation’s 60-year history to “Save Democracy” and “Save Malaysia” to get over four million unregistered eligible voters to register on the electoral roll so that they could vote in the forthcoming 14GE.

(Speech at the DAP National Leadership Retreat 2017 at the Dorsett Grand Subang Hotel, Subang Jaya on Saturday, 4th March 2017)

  1. #1 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 4 March 2017 - 11:09 am

    Frankly, I think Najib is mimicking Trump in campaigning. He seems to think, like Trump does, that all he has to do is make spectacular declarations, no matter if it’s dubious, half truth or even lies, and he can get votes.

    It’s not just the silly comparison to Saudis and inferences, it’s also things like Sarawak will not get highways and projects with opposition in Putrajaya when it’s proven in fact opposite or even Shafie Apdal ambitions to be CM is nothing surprising nor cause of his riff with Najib.

    Should we be asking if Najib ( or is it Rosmah??) hair is real just like they do with Trump?

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