Putrajaya has disallowed the Election Commission (EC) from preparing guidelines for a caretaker government once Parliament or a state legislature is dissolved, a commission member revealed today.
The Barisan Nasional (BN) and its predecessor, the Alliance, have been in power since Malaya's independence in 1957 but only founding prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman had taken official leave from government duties for election campaigns.
“The ministry involved refused to allow the EC to draft the guidelines, resulting in the EC’s failure to do its job,” Manogran told a seminar organised by the Bar Council in Kuala Lumpur today.
He did not identify the ministry concerned.
The EC had always been under the Prime Minister's Department but after the May 5 general elections, Putrajaya proposed it report to a parliamentary select committee.
Manogaran also expressed disappointment over the public still blaming the EC for various issues, saying the commission had worked hard and even lodged police reports against errant voter registration agents.
“We have allowed agents from political parties, non-governmental organisations and representatives of institutions of higher learning to ensure a smooth voter registration exercise.
“However, we have not ruled out the possibility that an oversight or deliberate additions of voters in the EC’s records had occurred."
We have lodged police reports as soon as we discovered attempts by agents to cheat," he said.
Manogran also said the MyKad used on voting day could be validated based on the electoral roll by recording each serial number on the MyKads.
Manogran did not deny the weaknesses that took place at polling centres due to inadequate training given to election workers.
“We had given training. However, there were those who pulled out at the last minute due to lack of confidence to observe the running of the elections.”
“We had to look for substitutes at short notice,” he added.
Manogaran told the forum that the EC needed the assistance of NGOs to monitor and provide feedback to ensure better elections in the future and would welcome constructive criticisms to ensure it did its job. -July 13, 2013.