ERC proposes no poster war in elections

Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman.

IPOH: The Electoral Reform Committee (ERC) has proposed for a no poster war in the next election as it is seen as a waste.

Its chairman, Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman, said the committee would forward the proposal to the government and the Election Commission (EC) for further scrutiny.

“This poster war has been overly done. We will recommend that no more poster wars be allowed, but there may be an exception (for certain constituencies in rural areas) because the voters would want to know the candidates.

“The poster war creates a lot of problems and requires huge expenses … we will study this thoroughly,” he told reporters after attending the state-level Public Engagement on Electoral Law Reform System programme here today, attended by about 200 people, including civil servants and political parties.

The ERC was established in August 2018 and was given two years to submit a comprehensive report containing electoral reform proposals, including systems, processes and legislative amendments.

Rashid said the ERC would also recommend that postal ballots for overseas voters be fully managed in the countries concerned by responsible representatives, including the counting of the ballots, to ensure that eligible voters do not miss out on voting.

“We would suggest that the postal votes not be sent back here (Malaysia). Representatives who are in charge of voting matters would distribute, collect and count the ballot papers there,” he said.

In addition, he said the committee was also studying the best way to facilitate the filing of an election decision petition so that it could be heard in court.

“Other suggestions include the need for exposure on voting methods beginning at the school level so students will know the power of their voting rights,” he said.

Rashid added that the ERC would submit an interim report later this year to the government, while the specific report is expected in September next year.

Asked if the proposals by the ERC could be adopted in the upcoming Sarawak’s 12th state election, he said that would be impossible as there were many legislative issues that the EC was currently working on.