The Election Commission (EC) has continued on the 8th of March with its redelineation of our electoral boundaries with the 2nd display of proposed changes. This despite the fact that it has NOT held public enquiries for objectors in Selangor due to an ongoing court action brought about by the Selangor state government.
In our opinion, EC continuing with the redelineation process without Selangor, is going against Article 113(6) of the Federal Constitution where the units of review for delineation are Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak. Selangor cannot be excluded when it was part of the review at the 1st display.
We have pointed out in the past that EC has failed in its duty in carrying out its constitutional duty when it carried out the delineation exercise when it disregarded the principles set out under Section 2 of the 13th Schedule of the Federal Constitution by not only ignoring badly malapportioned constituencies but created even more malapportioned seats especially in Selangor.
The problem of malapportionment where constituencies are either excessively under-represented or over-represented by having either more than or less than 33 percent number of voters from the state average still remains in the 2nd display. More than 23 Parliamentary seats and 56 State Assembly seats are still under-represented while more than 20 Parliamentary seats and 51 state seats are over-represented in the 2nd display, and these numbers exclude Selangor.
Clearly, the EC has failed in its responsibility to comply with Section 2(C) of the 13th Schedule of the Federal Constitution where it states that “the number of electors within each constituency in a State ought to be approximately equal.” Failure to equalize constituencies is violating the One Person-One-Vote-One Value principle and robbing Malaysians of a fair election.
Our special taskforce on delineation, the Delineation Action & Research Team (DART) has also pointed out numerous examples of gerrymandering in EC’s 1st display where the stipulation in Section 2(d) of the 13th Schedule that local ties must be maintained is ignored.
Based on Penang Institute and DART volunteers’ analysis of EC’s recommendations in the 1st display, DART prepared templates of Surat Bantahan (Objection Letters) for all Parliamentary and State constituencies in Malaysia except Sarawak who have already completed their exercise. They were made available for download by all affected voters and we believe it contributed to the record number of 835 objections received by EC for the 1st Display.
DART has once again prepared Surat Bantahan for all constituencies affected by this 2nd display. Customized Surat Bantahan templates for 63 Parliamnetary and 117 State constituencies are now ready for download from our website at https://dart.bersih.org.
While we believe that it is unconstitutional for EC to continue with the redelineation exercise without including Selangor, nevertheless, it is imperative that we engage the EC in this 2nd display so that they are not given a walkover, complete the process without holding local enquiries and present their final report to the PM for Parliament to adopt.
Bersih 2.0 urge all affected voters to submit Surat Bantahan with 100 of more signatures of voters from their constituency to their state EC office before the 7th of April, 2017. There is no limitation to the number of objections (Surat Bantahan) that can be submitted from a constituency. By law, EC has to call for a local enquiry for submissions that meet the criteria set by Section 5 of the 13th Schedule, that is, submitted by 100 or more affected voters.
Not participating in the objection process in this 2nd display would not only mean that EC is given a “walkover” but it would also mean that we accept the malapportionment, gerrymandering and the utter disregard of the Federal Constitution by EC. We must send in our objections, in huge numbers and from every constituencies and States. We cannot be silent or be silenced!
This is what affected voters can do.
- Check to see if your constituency is affected and download the customized Surat Bantahan if it’s affected. Download your template here… https://dart.bersih.org/2nddisplaypardunaffected/
- Electoral maps comparing GE13, 1st display, 2nd display and overlaid with local authority boundaries (PBT). You can view the maps here…
- Collect 110 signatures to accompany the Surat Bantahan. You can download the Borang Bantahan here…
The deadline for submission to your state EC office is *7th April, 2017*. Addresses are given in the Surat Bantahan.
Statement issued by,
Bersih 2.0 Steering Committee members.