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The many forms of vote-buying

“I believe Ku Li (Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah) through his men will move from house to house to pay voters. This is their secret weapon.”

Wan Abdul Rahim

Wan Abdul Rahim

In the last few days of the Galas by-election campaign, PAS national election director Datuk Abd Halim Abd Rahman accused Umno veteran and Galas by-election director Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah of vote-buying.

On 31 Oct 2010, PAS Kelantan election director Datuk Wan Abdul Rahim Wan Abdullah also alleged that Umno was bribing voters with RM1,000 and a free television set. However, neither was able to substantiate their claims with evidence. (Source: Now PAS accuses Ku Li of vote buying, The Malaysian Insider, 2 Nov 2010)

“Actually we want to help the EC (Election Commission), we want to ensure that more people turn out to vote.”

Abd Halim defending PAS’s offer to reimburse Galas voters living outside the state their transportation costs. On 30 Oct 2010, PAS had announced it would compensate up to RM250 to out of town voters who returned to vote on 4 Nov 2010. (Source: PAS dismisses EC warning over ‘vote-buying’, Malaysiakini, 2 Nov 2010)

“Yes, we will issue land titles. The Orang Asli are not outsiders, they are the rakyat of Kelantan. So we will issue land titles to them.”

Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat on 1 Nov 2010 promised Orang Asli in Galas that the state government was already processing land titles for them. He said the delay was due to red tape in state agencies.

On the same day, Kelantan Deputy Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yaakob announced that the state would allocate two acres of land, which would be recognised and gazetted as Orang Asli reserve.

Earlier on 27 Oct 2010, the federal government announced it had set aside RM10.8 million for Orang Asli welfare in Gua Musang when Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin visited one of the communities. (Source: Kelantan pledge land titles to Orang Asli, Malaysiakini, 1 Nov 2010)

“How can giving zakat be corruption?”

Abdul Halim

Abdul Halim

Abdul Halim again, this time defending Nik Aziz’s act of giving wang zakat to poor Orang Asli who had converted to Islam. (Source: PAS: Nik Aziz gives alms, not bribes, Malaysiakini, 3 Nov 2010)

The EC’s response…

“But in the eyes of the law, any money given by anyone to voters that can sway their vote is considered a bribe under Article 10 of the Election Offences Act 1954.”

EC deputy chairperson Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar is quick to label Nik Aziz’s alms-giving as bribery. (Source: EC: Alms or not, giving money is bribery, Malaysiakini, 3 Nov 2010)

“We hear a lot about this, people giving bicycles and food. They can say it is for all sorts of reasons. … Our votes are confidential, so how do you know that person voted for the party which gave him the money? I don’t see that there is a contract.”

EC chairperson Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof dismissing reports that bribery was involved when RM20 was given out to voters at a Wanita Umno dinner in the Batu Sapi by-election. He said bribery was difficult to prove because there was no evidence to show that the recipient would necessarily vote for the party which gave the inducement. (Source: Wanita Umno’s spending spree ‘not a bribe’, Malaysiakini, 2 Nov 2010)

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One Response to “The many forms of vote-buying”

  1. hamid ibrahim says:

    Umno is desperate [and] will go to any length to bribe the voters. It is up to the opposition to be vigilant so that the Umno follows the law. I know Umno won’t, because the power is in their hands- but ultimately they will pay the price for their actions. GOD is watching everyone.

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