4 Malaysians in Texas wonder if their ballots will reach on time

Kristina (third from left) with the pilot and fellow Malaysians at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston, Texas.

GEORGE TOWN: A group of four Malaysians residing in Texas have managed to send their ballot papers back home by catching an on-duty Malaysian pilot headed back home.

But with the pilot reaching Kuala Lumpur at 1.30pm tomorrow, they are hoping against hope their ballots would reach before the 5pm closing time.

The group’s spokesperson, Kristina Mariswamy, said they received their ballot papers today at noon Houston time (2pm in Malaysia) and thought they would not be able to send them back to the EC on time.

However, things changed when she received a message on Facebook from a fellow Malaysian, saying there was a flight to Kuala Lumpur at 1am Houston time with a stop in Taiwan.

Kristina, 31, said the fellow Malaysian suggested to wait at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston, to see if any Malaysians were going to Kuala Lumpur.

“So we showed up and held up signs. Right before the final check-ins were over, lo and behold, one of the pilots was Malaysian, on the way home to vote.

“We sealed everything in front of him, and he was gracious enough to take our ballots home with him,” the marketing manager based in Texas told FMT when contacted.

Kristina, 31, is a registered voter in the Bukit Mertajam parliamentary constituency and the Machang Bubok state seat in Penang.

Of the other three Malaysians, two are voting in the Klang Valley and another in Negeri Sembilan.

Kristina said the pilot would take 17 hours from Houston to Taipei and would fly home on another flight to Kuala Lumpur. The pilot would arrive in KL at 1.30pm on Wednesday.

The returning officers will accept postal votes up to 5pm tomorrow.

“We are hoping to get someone on their way to Penang to take my ballots to Bukit Mertajam.”