Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Jenapala smells foul play in Sabah PKR elections

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By Stephanie Sta Maria
KUALA LUMPUR: P Jenapala is the latest to cry foul over the PKR election process when he alleged that two “blatant” cases of “outright fraud” took place in Sabah last weekend.

In a press conference today, he accused the current party leadership of resorting to “deceit” in order to secure a victory for its “chosen candidate” Azmin Ali in the divisions of Libaran and Sandakan.
According to Jenapala, Libaran and Sandakan saw a 60% and 43% voter turnout respectively.
In the former, Azmin garnered 881 votes to Zaid Ibrahim's six. In the latter, 417 votes were in Azmin's favour while 25 went to Zaid.
“What's troubling here is that the average voter turnout for these elections has never passed the 10% mark,” he said. “But the turnout in these two divisions was staggeringly high.
“Does this not smell of foul play? These numbers are suspicious and after all the past incidences of fraud, do the party leaders honestly expect us to take the numbers at face value?”
The former PKR deputy secretary-general also alleged that ballot boxes at Libaran were whisked away and manipulated, while those from Sandakan were taken to a different location for counting.
Jenapala said his suspicions were further fuelled by the fact that Libaran division leader Thamrin Jaini is a strong supporter of PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim.
He added that even the results in Tawau, which is headed by Kong Hong Ming, a strong Azmin ally, also registered a surprisingly large turnout and an “absurd” 533 votes in Azmin's favour.
“This pattern of ridiculous percentages in voter turnout and margins of victory also occurred in numerous other divisions in the peninsula such as Ketereh, Kuala Lipis and Bruas,” he said. “You can be rest assured that wherever Anwar has an ally, the voter turnout is cranked up.”
Pressure from the top
Jenapala also referred to a recent claim by prominent social activist Haris Ibrahim that ballot papers were made available even before the weekend elections in order to boost the votes of certain candidates in the event of a low voter turnout.
PKR secretary-general Safuddin Nasution has already rubbished those claims and insisted that all ballot papers contained a high level of security which guaranteed transparency in the election process.
An unconvinced Jenapala, however, lashed out at the party over this issue.
“Is this not a blatant act of fraud?” he asked. “Are not ballot papers supposed to be under lock and key when they are not in use? Just what new brand of democracy is the PKR leadership propagating?”
Jenapala didn't hesitate to point a finger at Anwar himself whom he alleged was making last-minute calls to numerous divisions in Sabah to pressure them to vote for Azmin.
“He is making these last-ditch efforts in addition to the acts of fraud that are already being committed to make doubly sure that his 'golden child' comes out tops,” he said.
“The Kota Marudu division head, Anthony Mandiau, informed party members before they voted that Anwar had personally called him to ensure that the votes didn't go to Zaid or his own child Nurul Izzah. Many members can testify to this.”

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