BEAUFORT: Sabah Umno Youth wants the Election Commission (EC) to cancel its plan to put up video cameras at polling streams during the Kimanis by-election polling day on Saturday (Jan 18), deeming it an act that can instil fear among voters.
Its chief Aziz Julkarnain said while the EC must continue to be transparent, they must uphold their duty to maintain the secrecy of voters’ ballots.
“We do not want Kimanis constituents to be scared when casting their votes as the government might be looking at them through the cameras.
“The cameras’ installation would lead to the constituents feeling they are forced to vote for the government.
“So it would be best if the EC cancels plans to install them as it will affect the democratic process of the elections, ” Aziz said at a press conference at the Barisan command centre in Kimanis Centro on Tuesday (Jan 14).
Earlier on Tuesday, EC chairman Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun, in a statement, said the EC will be installing cameras at all 68 polling streams in the 19 polling districts on polling day.
He had assured the secrecy of the ballots would not be compromised, and that the devices were in place to record the ongoing situation and were being done in accordance with procedural guidelines.
Meanwhile, Aziz expressed regret over various incidents he deemed as election offences carried out by Parti Warisan Sabah and its supporters.
He mentioned the viral video of an incident at Kampung Madang Pimping in Membakut on Monday (Jan 13), where Barisan’s campaign materials were taken down by alleged Warisan supporters.
“This was allegedly witnessed by state Infrastructure Development Minister Datuk Peter Anthony and Sukau assemblyman Datuk Saddi Abdul Rahman (both from Warisan).
“We regret that these leaders, who were supposed to ensure the laws are upheld, were actually allegedly part of the criminal act.
“It is against the rules to take down campaign materials belonging to a rival candidate, only EC or the authorities can do so, ” he said, adding that a police report has been made on the matter on Tuesday morning at the Membakut police station.
He also alleged that Warisan has repetitively breached election regulations during the campaign period, where food was given out to the public in various locations during events within the constituency.
“We find no speedy action was taken by the EC or the police on election offences by Warisan.
“But we will not retaliate, as this might (just) be provocation from our opponent. We will use the right channels, ” he added.