‘Panel will fine-tune election process’

‘Panel will fine-tune election process’

PUTRAJAYA: The formation of the parliamentary select committee on electoral reforms proves that the Barisan Nasional is serious in improving the existing voting system, said Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

Although the current electoral system was fair and transparent, the deputy prime minister said the select committee would serve to improve and fine-tune the election process further.

“This does not mean that the current system we have been using is not good, but we want to improve the system.

“The Election Commission has also admitted that it needs brushing up,” Muhyiddin, who is also education minister, said after presenting prizes to the winners of the national creative Science and Mathematics competition yesterday.

The competition was organised by the National Translation Institute (INTM) for primary and secondary schools nationwide.

“Like the opposition, we, too want to be voted into power based on a fair system.

“There will be transparency because parliamentarians from both sides will be discussing on how to improve the system through the select committee,” said Muhyiddin, who is also BN deputy chairman.

He was commenting on the setting up of the select committee as announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Muhyiddin said the BN was determined to have a fair and transparent voting system and the select committee would be consulting with the various parties concerned.

MIC president and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk G. Palanivel described the move as bold and one that would further strengthen democracy in the country as well as improve perception among voters.

Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon said the move was “politically and legally correct”, and was a positive response to public concerns about the electoral process.

“The committee should ask the EC to make presentations and explanations.

“It should also hold public hearings in various regions to allow the people to present their views and suggestions.”

Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said the PM’s announcement showed that Najib understood and was responsive to new realities within the society.

Bersih 2.0 chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan welcomed the announcement but hoped civil society would be involved in the process.

She also expressed hope that the reforms could take place before the next general election.

Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections (Mafrel) deputy chairman Shahrudin Othman said the formation of the committee was a positive step in clearing the air about allegations of permanent residents being listed as voters.

“There have been lots of complaints against the EC. When it (the committee) comes up with an action plan, the recommendations should be made public before they are implemented.”

Article source: http://www.nst.com.my/nst/articles/2dpmxvet2/Article/

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