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Thursday, January 31, 2013

EC tells NGO domestic observers to obey general election conditions


PUTRAJAYA, Feb 1 — All the 16 non-government organisations appointed as domestic observers for the upcoming 13th general election must obey the conditions set by the Election Commission (EC), said its chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof.   
The EC has appointed five NGOs from Peninsular Malaysia, eight and three from Sarawak and Sabah respectively, to observe the general election process, Abdul Aziz (picture)said.  
“It is a historic day today, as the EC has appointed domestic observers for the first time. This proves that there’s nothing to hide in the general election process.  
“The appointed NGOs must ensure that all their representatives obey the pledge while on duty. The EC will monitor them to ensure the general election goes smoothly,” he said after presenting the letters of appointment to the five NGOs from Peninsular Malaysia here yesterday.   
Abdul Aziz said the pledge’s main condition was that the observers should not campaign or try to garner votes, disobey EC officers and police directions, or try to disturb or interview voters in the voting centres.     
The five peninsula NGOs are the Malaysian Youth Council, Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS), Centre for Public and Policy Studies (CPPS), Merdeka Center and Malaysian Federation of Disabled Persons Associations.  
In Sarawak, they are Persatuan Belia Islam Nasional Sarawak, Persatuan Kebangsaan Melayu Sarawak, Persatuan Kebangsaan Orang Ulu Sarawak (OUNA), Persatuan Kebangsaan Dayak Bidayuh (DBNA), Sibu Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Persatuan Melanau Sibu, Persatuan Cina Miri and Federation of Orang Ulu Association Malaysia, whose appointment letters will be presented on February 5 in Kuching.   
Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia Cawangan Sabah, Persatuan Belia Sabah and Persatuan Gabungan Cina Sabah will receive their appointments in Kota Kinabalu on February 6. 
“The conditions are to ensure the general election is conducted smoothly, and not meant to constraint the observers.  
“The appointed NGOs are most welcome to communicate with the EC (through the 13th general election Observers Special Unit Call Centre) on any matters or questions pertaining to the observers’ role,” Abdul Aziz said. — Bernama

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