PONTIAN: The Election Commission has reminded employers to allow workers who are registered voters to vote in the Tanjung Piai by-election.
EC chairman Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun says any employer who prevent workers from voting will face action under Section 25 (3) of the Election Offences Act 1954.
“Employers can be fined up to RM5,000 or jailed up to one year, if found guilty, ” he said in a statement yesterday.
He said all parties must stop campaigning activities including outside polling centres and on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others.
He said the EC had inspected the polling items including boxes, ink and polling papers to be used during the polling process today.
A total of 27 polling centres and 125 lanes will be opened for the voting process with 1,019 people on duty.
“A total of 52,471 voters are due to vote in the Tanjung Piai parliamentary by-election tomorrow. The EC hopes that all voters will carry out their responsibility by turning up to vote, ” he said.
He reminded all six candidates and their political parties and supporters to adhere to the rules and regulations during polling.
Azhar said this included not wearing or bringing banners that showed political party logos and slogans some 50m away from polling centres.
“I hope this matter does not happen in the Tanjung Piai by-election, as in the previous elections, there had been one or two cases, including involving a past candidate.
“We do not know whether they forgot, do not understand or intentionally did it, ” he told the media after monitoring the distribution of election tools and voting boxes at Dewan Jubli Intan Sultan Ibrahim yesterday.
On an unrelated matter, he said it was a lie that the permit for walkabouts and door-to-door campaigning was required only during the mid-way period of the Tanjung Piai by-election.
He said the requirement for permits from the police had been introduced during the first day of campaigning in the by-election and there were no objections by all the candidates’ agents.
Azhar said the EC had no say in the issuance of permits and any condition under the permit which fell under the purview of the police.
“I think those who perpetrated that lie did so in bad faith, and those who said it was the EC that came out with such a condition also did so in bad faith, ” he said.
It was reported that Attorney General Tan Sri Tommy Thomas said that walkabouts and door-to-door campaigning did not need police permits under current laws.