Kuching woman shocked to discover registered as voter in Batang Sadong

Yii and the complainant are seen after lodging a police report.

KUCHING, April 2: Following recent reports of a 150-year-old voter and more than 100 centenarians spotted in the electoral list raising doubts about the list’s integrity, a woman from Sungai Maong here has found herself registered as a voter in Batang Sadong parliamentary seat without her knowledge.

Based on a check on her name conducted through the Election Commission’s (EC’s) online platform(www.spr.gov.my), she discovered she has been registered to vote in the Batang Sadong Parliamentary seat and Simunjan state seat, since 1992.

The most peculiar part is that the complainant claimed she has never registered as a voter and has never lived in Simunjan nor has she ever stepped foot in Simunjan. She also claimed that she had never asked anyone to help her to register in the past.

The woman, who wished not to be identified, contacted Democratic Action Party (DAP) for assistance and also to lodge a police report and an official report with the EC.

“The worst part is, upon further checking, there is another voter named Mrs Salbiah (not full name) registered in the electoral roll with the exact same IC number, in the same location,” said Dr Kelvin Yii, DAP’s candidate for Stampin parliamentary seat in the upcoming general election.

Further checks with Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (JPN) shows no such person as Mrs Salbiah with that IC number in their system, but her name exists in the electoral system.

In a press statement today, Yii urged the EC to show greater urgency to screen through and clean up the electoral list from all discrepancies to ensure a free and fair election especially in the coming 14th General Election.

“We must not let our votes be stolen and the future of our country decided by dubious voters or ‘phantom voters'”, said Yii, who is also state DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen’s special assistant.

“This is a very serious matter, as there is a possibility that two separate persons could vote in the election under the same IC number. While we cannot prove whether these two persons had voted in any of the elections as votes are secret and the EC does not keep such records, there is also no guarantee that these two names weren’t used to vote before as well.

Yii cautioned that this could also be a reflection of a bigger problem as there are many others who may not be aware and have not registered to vote, but their names are in the voter registry, creating the risk of abuse and ‘phantom voters’ voting on their behalf without their knowledge.

Also, Yii pointed out that DAP had received many complaints from members of the public claiming that their voting location was shifted recently.

One example is a whole family who had voted for many years in the Batu Lintang state seat (currently under the Bandar Kuching Parliamentary seat), but now has been shifted to vote in the Petra Jaya Parliamentary seat this election.

“These are only the few examples that we know about. Such manipulation and transferring of phantom voters is not new. There could be hundred if not thousands of other such cases even in Sarawak,” he added.

Yii also urged members of the public to constantly check their voting status on the SPR website (www.spr.gov.my) and report any discrepancy immediately. — DayakDaily