The police is exercising its muscle as though it is a parallel election administrator by banning videoed talks to be shown/sold at political speeches/`ceramah’. Such restrictions is introduced for the first time in Malaysian by-elections though the police is notorious for restricting political campaign activities in the past. Eg police disallow `no-contesting’ parties from putting up banners and posters, holding talks etc.
While the police is exercising its power as though it is an equal election administrator as the EC it has not shown any accountability, commitment, impartiality or responsibility towards free and fair elections which are values essential for an election administrator. It seems to act on its own whims and fancies, which usually reflect a bias toward the Federal ruling party. The system in Malaysia is such that the EC does not act as the apex body in conducting elections-though it is the sole body charged with doing so Constitutionally. The EC is answerable to the Prime Minister and not the Parliament, and therefore lack power to regulate election issues managed under other Ministries eg the Homw Affairs which oversees the police force.
May 27, 2009 17:15 PM
Supporters Cannot Be Traffic Controllers – Police
PENANG, May 27 (Bernama) — Supporters of political parties or candidates contesting in the Penanti state by-election are prohibited from controlling and diverting traffic as this may cause major traffic congestions.
Royal Malaysia Police’s media relations officer for the by-election, Supt Shaharon Anuar Abdul Latif said traffic control was the prerogative of the police.
“The supporters are also prohibited from escorting individuals or certain leaders to the extent of closing a road and jumping red lights.
“When they make their own rules like closing a road, it will spell trouble for other users and will cause traffic congestion,” he said in a statement here today.
He said those found committing the offence could be arrested and investigated under the Road Transport Act 1987.
Shaharon Anuar also said political parties and candidates as well as their supporters were prohibited from showing, distributing, exhibiting and selling VCD/DVD or any campaign materials during their ceramah or political talks.
“If any political party or candidate wants to hold a political talk, they cannot show VCDs or DVDs of political talks made by other individuals because it violates the permit regulations and can be investigated under the Film Censorship Act 2002,” he said, adding that overall, the situation in Penanti was under control.