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Monday September 30, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Monday September 30, 2013 MYT 10:00:51 AM
by razak ahmad
BENTONG: Candidates vying for posts in the strict party elections that bar open campaigning have been given a leeway to promote themselves on Facebook.
Umno election committee chairman Tan Sri Tajol Rosli Ghazali said the party had decided to allow the candidates for next month’s polls to reach out to voters via the online social networking platform.
“The Umno disciplinary board will come down hard on them if they flout the code of ethics.
“But we will allow it if candidates want to use Facebook to introduce themselves. This will not be a problem,” Tajol Rosli told reporters at the party’s training institute in Janda Baik, near here, yesterday.
The move followed appeals by a number of candidates to allow greater flexibility to campaign without flouting the party’s code of ethics that was drawn up to prevent vote buying.
The code bars candidates from most forms of open campaigning, including organising events and gatherings to canvas for votes.
Candidates had complained that the increase in the number of voters, from 2,500 in previous polls to 146,000 from this year meant that they now needed more avenues to reach out.
Polling for positions in the Umno Youth, Wanita and Puteri wings will take place on Oct 12, while voting for supreme council positions is on Oct 19. Voters will be casting their ballots in their respective divisions
Tajol Rosli said he had suggested to the party to take out centrespread advertisements in newspapers to list the names of supreme council candidates and give them adequate exposure.
This will be in addition to a nationwide roadshow that will kick off tomorrow, which the party is organising to introduce candidates in each state.
Meanwhile, party executive-secretary Datuk Rauf Yusoh said the Umno headquarters would announce the final list of candidates, after completing the screening process to weed out those who were bankrupts or had been charged for criminal offences, on Oct 7.
On the same day, the party will also announce the outcome of appeals made by candidates who had their nominations rejected earlier.
Rauf said 35,000 Umno members and volunteers would be involved in managing the polling process, adding that 15 million ballot papers would be printed for use in the elections.
The ballot papers will come in 11 different colours and will bear security measures visible only via ultra-violet light.
Rauf said he was satisfied with the outcome of the three-day election simulation exercise and training course that ended at the party’s training institute yesterday.
“The simulation exercise convinced the party leadership that Umno is ready to conduct its biggest-ever party election,” said Rauf.
Tags / Keywords:
Politics, Umno, facebook, Tajol Rosli Ghazali
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