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Wednesday April 3, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Friday April 26, 2013 MYT 12:50:35 AM
KUALA LUMPUR: The Election Commission (EC) will be implementing numerous improvements for the 13th general election to ensure transparency during the voting process.
Among the measures to be introduced are the use of indelible ink, early voting by police and military personnel to replace postal voting, allowing the disabled (OKU) to bring along someone to aid them in the voting process and abolishing the process of protest during nomination and withdrawal of candidacy.
These rules came into in force following amendments to the General Election Regulations (Process of General Election) 1981 (Amendment) 2012 and General Election Regulations (Postal Voting) 2003 (Amendment) 2012, which were gazetted last year.
Indelible ink will be used for the fist time, where the left index finger of each voter will be marked. Those who refuse will not be issued the ballot paper.
Another first is the introduction of an early voting process for military and General Operations Force (and their spouses), as well as police personnel unable to vote on polling day.
This will involve 273,819 voters comprising 163,017 voters from the military and 110,802 from the police.
In another first, Malaysians living abroad will also be allowed to vote early through the postal voting method.
To be eligible, they have to be registered voters and had been in Malaysia not less than 30 days in five years prior to the dissolution of Parliament or state assembly.
However, Malaysians living in southern Thailand, Singapore, Brunei and Kalimantan in Indonesia are unable to make postal votes and have to return home to cast their vote.
The EC has also abolished the process of protest during nomination and the three-day cooling off period to withdraw candidacy.
Meanwhile, OKU will also be allowed bring along someone to help them vote, as long as he is a Malaysian citizen aged 21 and above.
Media personnel, EC staff and security personnel can also apply to be postal voters.
Meanwhile, 16 non-governmental organisations (NGO) have been appointed as GE13 observers, with five in the peninsula, eight in Sarawak and three in Sabah.
The EC, with the cooperation of the Information, Communications and Culture Ministry, is also prepared to give equal access to all political parties contesting in GE13 to present their manifestos on Radio Television Malaysia.
Other new elements to be implemented for GE13 are:
- A campaign period of not less than 10 days.
- Representatives of candidates in voting rooms to be given a clear view of voters going to the voting booths.
- The exhibition of the Electoral Roll be extended from seven days to 14 days.
- Creation of the GE13 portal (www.pru13.gov.my) for access to the latest information.
- The EC will not provide tents for supporters of parties at nomination centres on nomination day. - Bernama
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