Bersih: EC must stop redelineation, settle pending cases first

bersih-2-spr-1PETALING JAYA: Bersih 2.0 has rubbished a Bernama report quoting Election Commission chairman Mohd Hashim Abdullah as saying that “the Kuala Lumpur High Court had disallowed the Selangor’s government application to injunct the EC from carrying out the second round of local inquiries except Selangor and Melaka”.

Calling the report confusing, the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections clarified that the KL High Court had granted an injunction last week to restraint the EC, over its unprecedented decision to continue publishing the second redelineation notice excluding Selangor.

“This injunction is further to the stay order against the first local inquiry for the state of Selangor, granted by the KL High Court in December 2016.

“This means that the redelineation process in Selangor is halted until the proceedings of the Selangor judicial review is completed,” the Bersih 2.0 steering committee said in a statement today.

Bersih 2.0 also pointed to the stay order granted by the Melaka High Court in May 2017 against the second local inquiry for the state of Melaka.

“So, like in Selangor, the EC cannot complete the redelineation until the Melaka judicial review is completed.”

The electoral watchdog reiterated how EC’s decision to publish the second notice with the exclusion of Selangor was highly alarming, because it had disregarded the stay order which the Selangor government had obtained.

“It shows that the EC is adamant in pushing through the redelineation despite constitutional issues being raised in the case.

“So, Bersih 2.0 and Malaysians have no choice but to respond by taking more court action against the EC.

In addition to the Selangor and Melaka cases, there are currently five more pending cases relating to the EC’s redelineation exercise – in Perak, Johor, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, and Kelantan.

“The EC should not have continued with the second notice and inquiries, and should have instead waited for the resolution of these cases before proceeding,” Bersih said, adding it was not against the redelineation exercise but just wants it done fairly and correctly in accordance with the principles of law and the Federal Constitution.

“The EC has severely broken these principles, and taking unprecedented action to circumvent the due process,” Bersih 2.0 said, accusing the agency of using the current redelineation process to worsen the pre-existing malapportionment and gerrymandering in constituencies across the country.