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Published: Thursday April 18, 2013 MYT 2:35:00 PMUpdated: Thursday April 18, 2013 MYT 11:43:18 PM
By REGINA LEE
KUALA LUMPUR: DAP has given the Registrar of Societies (RoS) until 3pm Friday to revoke the letter derecognising their central executive committee members.
Failing which, the party secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said late Thursday that they will instruct all their candidates to use the PAS and the PKR symbols when handing in their nomination forms on Saturday.
Lim reiterated that all 53 parliamentary candidates and 103 state seat candidates will then use the PAS symbol in peninsula Malaysia, and the PKR banner in Sabah and Sarawak.
In a press conference Thursday after an emergency CEC meeting, he also stressed that the party will accept nothing less than a formal letter from the RoS revoking their letter dated April 17.
His father and party stalwart Lim Kit Siang also chimed in, saying that RoS also had to give them time to spread the word to their candidates if it did not rescind its decision.
"Any report in the press is completely unacceptable. We want it in writing," he said.
Meanwhile, Guan Eng, together with party chairman Karpal Singh, said they felt emotional about having to use other symbols instead of the DAP's Rocket.
"I'm sad. We've been forced into this," said Karpal.
"We feel angry. How can they do this to us 48 hours before nominations?" asked Guan Eng.
PETALING JAYA: DAP can contest in the general election as the Registrar of Societies (RoS) has merely issued it with a show-cause notice, said Election Commission chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof.
"(DAP) can contest. The RoS gave them a show-cause notice," said Aziz in an SMS reply to The Star when asked about the status of the Opposition party.
EC deputy chairman Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar, when contacted, said that the DAP would be allowed to contest if the decision by the RoS only involved the Registrar not recognising the political party's central committee following its probe into the DAP internal election.
"They will not be allowed to contest using the DAP symbol only if the party is de-registered by the RoS," said Wan Ahmad.
He said any decision by the EC regarding the status of the DAP in the coming general election would need to be based by the decision made by the RoS.
Bernama reported Thursday that the Registrar of Societies Datuk Abdul Rahman Othman said the DAP had not been deregistered and could still use its symbol for the general election on May 5.
He said in a statement here that the RoS' office informed the DAP on Wednesday that it was studying the party's registration following a dispute among its members.
Pending the resolution of the dispute, the RoS, as provided for under Section 3A of the Societies Act 1966, did not accord recognition to the office-bearers of the committee formed in the party elections on Dec 15 last year, he said.
"However,the DAP has not been deregistered and it can still use its symbol during the GE13," Abdul Rahman said.
He also said that the investigation relating to the party elections would proceed, according to Bernama.
However, DAP slammed the RoS's decision to not recognise the central executive committee appointed after the controversial party election last December.
DAP claims that the RoS ruling derecognising the central executive committee appointed after the party election last December would effectively render the secretary-general's position vacant.
DAP said all election candidates from all political parties were required to hand in a letter of authorisation from the party leadership allowing them to contest under their respective party symbols.
DAP claimed that if their secretary-general Lim Guan Eng was not recognised, it would render the letters of authorisation to their candidates as worthless and that they would be forced to contest as independent candidates.
"So in this extraordinary and emergency situation, we may use the PAS symbol for our candidates in peninsula Malaysia, and the PKR logo for those in Sabah and Sarawak," said Lim in an emergency press conference here on Thursday.
He added that the party's CEC will meet Thursday night to assess the situation and will come up with their decision on the party symbol.
At the same time, he wants the RoS and the EC for written letters clarifying the matter, even though the EC deputy chairman had said the party could still contest under the Rocket symbol.
"How am I supposed to trust the EC? I cannot risk our entire election campaign when their promises have always been broken," fumed Lim.
He added that the party's lawyers had tried in vain to communicate with the EC and RoS.
Lim also said he personally messaged EC chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof on Thursday but had yet to receive a reply.
In the letter signed by the Abdul Rahman to the DAP dated April 17, RoS stated that the party was being investigated for complaints that 753 delegates did not receive the notice for the annual general meeting, and that while the party was under investigation, the RoS would not recognise office bearers of the party.
Lim said that it was "malicious" of the RoS to make such a ruling less than 48 hours before nomination day for candidates.
"They assured us that they would postpone their investigations to May 9 and yet they were already punishing us even before their inquiry has started," he said.
In the press conference flanked by PAS secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Ali as well as PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution, Lim also insisted that DAP would never field their candidates as independents.
"We are definitely not independent. We are DAP and we are a part of Pakatan Rakyat," he said.
Meanwhile, both Mustafa and Saifuddin said that their respective parties were ready and willing to lend their party symbols to DAP candidates.
"I am willing to sign every single letter of authorisation if needed. I have spoken to both the party spiritual leader Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat and party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang and they both also said that this would not be a problem for them," said Mustafa.
Saifuddin also said that both his party president Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim have also consented to the "loan".
For more election stories, please visit The Star's GE13 site
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