SHAH ALAM, May 13 — Selangor will not follow Putrajaya in holding elections if they are held before the second half of the year, insisting that it has “obligations” to meet before going to the ballot box as speculation mounts of a possible general election in June.
Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim told The Malaysian Insider that the
RM300 million Selangorku social welfare grant is still being pushed out
and includes a RM2 million voter outreach project that will only be
completed by the end of June.
“We found there are 435,000 names, new and also those that have left a
constituency. We say to ourselves, 435,000 is a lot of people,” the
Selangor mentri besar said in a recent interview.
Pakatan Rakyat (PR) had said last month it wants to delay polls in
Selangor until the Election Commission (EC) cleans up the electoral roll
in the PKR-controlled state which the federal opposition says has
ballooned by 35 per cent since Election 2008.
Although Khalid said he did not “want to come up with any conclusion
now” as to the authenticity of the changes to the electoral roll, he
said the project would “make sure everyone knows what they’re supposed
to do and level the playing field.”
“By the end of June we will provide the whole analysis of what makes
up the 435,000,” the Ijok assemblyman said, adding that the figure
emerged after a comparison of the electoral rolls used in the last
election against the March 31, 2012 gazette.
He said the project would see the state government “provide a service
far beyond the EC” to “meet each and every one of them, to know whether
they are genuine voters” and tell them where they will be voting.
Khalid said his administration would try to meet each of the 435,000
“to know whether they are genuine voters and tell them either they are
voting here or somewhere else.”
is the reason why, if you call elections [in the first] six months of
2012, we are not going to participate. I have to do this, so I can write
to everyone to tell them you have to go to vote, which area,
constituency, where to go and vote,” he added.
The Malaysian Insider reported in March that PKR is opposed
to holding simultaneous polls in Selangor if the next general election
is called by May or June, as party leaders believe it would be a better
tactical strategy to spend more time shoring up support.
Such a move is designed to deny Datuk Seri Najib Razak the chance to
achieve a key objective that will help cement his hold on power after
leading Barisan Nasional (BN) into federal polls for the first time to
seek his own mandate.
The prime minister quipped on Friday night that he might meet the
King on Saturday, presumably to recommend the dissolution of parliament,
following a 100,000-strong turnout at the start of this weekend’s
Umno’s 66th anniversary celebrations. He did not meet the King but spent
time with friends drawn from social networking sites instead.
PR won 36 out of a total of 56 state seats in Selangor in the last
general election which saw Khalid replaced Umno’s Dr Mohd Khir Toyo as
A poll analysis recently found that the highest concentration of
dubious voters is found in the country’s wealthiest state which the
prime minister has pledged to take back “at all costs.”
Independent political analyst Ong Kian Ming said his Malaysian
Electoral Roll Analysis Project (MERAP) showed the number of voters in
Selangor had increased by over 340,000, or 21.8 per cent as of 2011, to
more than 1.9 million voters since Election 2008 compared to a national
average of 16.3 per cent.
He singled out the marginal seat of Hulu Selangor, which has seen
an increase of 17,000 voters, or a whopping 27.1 per cent, since
the March 2008 general election.
The credibility of the electoral roll has been widely questioned
since a Parliamentary Select Committee was set up late last year to look
into electoral improvements.
The panel completed its six-month tenure and submitted its findings
to Parliament in late March but the opposition and civil society groups
have criticised it for lacking specific recommendations on how to clean
up the voter registry.
This led electoral reform movement Bersih to hold its third rally for
free and fair elections on April 28, which saw tens of thousands gather
in Kuala Lumpur before being forcibly dispersed by police.
Khalid also said that “when we prepare a budget, it is for one year”
and that if elections were called in the first half of the year, there
would not be time to implement various projects including his flagship
He also cited the longstanding impasse over the statutory transfer of
water assets to the federal government, in which the opposition has
accused Putrajaya of colluding with water concessionaires in the state
to short-change residents.
“The water situation also, we want to do it in our five-year mandate.
We have an obligation to do so. That’s what I was elected for.”
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