The time is fast drawing near. In two more days, Malaysians will go to the polls.
May 5th is the day of reckoning as to whether Malaysia will see a new government (of the Opposition coalition - Pakatan Rakyat) or return the National Front coalition (Barisan Nasional) government for the next five years. Since the country's independence in 1957, Barisan Nasional has been the only government the people has known.
Will Malaysians see a change of power in this fiercely-fought general election touted as the mother of all elections?
If you are going to the polls this Sunday, the following information from an email might be helpful.
The writer says:
I have just completed my training to be a Polling Agent/Counting Agent/Barung Agent for this 13th GE to be held this coming 5th May 2013. I hope to be assigned to the Kota Kemuning voting centre but due to needs and other factors, I may be moved somewhere else. Personally, I am voting at Khee Beng school in Jln Bkt Kemuning and I suspect most of us who registered using our Permai address will be voting there. This can be checked on line at http://daftarj.spr.gov.my/semakpru13.aspx
I am writing this email becos of the many things you must be aware of before you go to the polling center. I 'll try my best to list them down here.
1. Be at the polling center real early, as I m suspecting that there may be a long queue due to the new polling process. Many will be sick of waiting and waste their vote. Don't be a fool to do that. Polling center opens at 8am till 5pm. If queue is long, hang in there, do not leave even after 5pm once you entered. Polling center gate closes at 5:00pm sharp RTM time. Polling continues till all in queue is done, regardless of time.
2. Check on-line first (http://daftarj.spr.gov.my/semakpru13.aspx) and print out your details before going to the voting center. You may be able to by-pass the Barung counter since you have a printout and know where to go and thus short cut your time.
3. Bring your IC, if you lost your IC, then use the temp IC. If you also lost your temp IC, then you can use your passport. Avoid using passport as we the counting agents will insist you fill up a Borang 11 which will take time, and affects the queue. This time EC allows even Gov't employee tag... hmmm... polling agent will seek verification if sees anyone using that.
4. Make sure your left hand index finger is clean, any makings or stains will caused you to be disallowed to vote. If you got band aid plaster on that finger, they will require you to use the right hand index instead. The default is left hand index finger. No stains allow on either fingers. The polling kerani will mark your left index finger with an ink.
5. Important! The ink will take about 30 second to dry. Bring along a tissue to dry off your finger before holding your ballot papers. Any smudge or stain on the ballot paper will render it spoiled vote. So be extremely careful. Now you understand why you need to be there early.
6. Your ballot paper will have a serial number, but must be clean of any extra marking or words or stains, smudge, pencil/pen marking or dots or TEAR on all the surface of the ballot papers. YOU CAN REJECT THE PIECE OF BALLOT PAPER AND INSIST ON A NEW ONE IF YOU SEE ANY OF THOSE. Do not be intimidated by anyone there as this is your ABSOLUTE RIGHT.
7. Ensure that the kerani that handed you the ballot paper, do not write the serial No. of your ballot papers next to your name on the list. He or she is suppose to just neatly cross out your name on the list. If you see that she wrote something, please raise hell. Make sure she crosses out your name on her list and we will do the same on ours.
8. If in some strange (may happen) event you were told that you have already voted, eventho you have not, and your fingers have no markings, you MUST raise hell. We the polling agents will raise hell too. It means that somebody has voted on your behalf. You will be required to fill forms and etc. Remember, your constitutional right to vote.
9. Do not wear any t-shirt or buttons or hat that is aligned to any of the political parties. You will be ask to remove or disallowed to enter the polling center.
10. When casting your vote, be careful not to make any other marks on the ballot paper. You will be using a pen instead of the usual pencil. So if you make a mistake and it is accidental, please request for a new ballot paper. They have 10% extra papers to cater for this sort of things.
11. Fold the ballot paper neatly in half checking to see that all is in order before proceeding to the ballot boxes. Here, we will have 2 ballot boxes for Parliament and State.
12. At the ballot boxes, SHOW and put the ballot paper into their corresponding box. Stand there to ensure that the kerani push your vote into the box. Please do not have any tissue or other paper in your hands as you may be stopped for search by the Polling agent. We are trained to look out for people who brings out their blank voting papers to sell. Don't do that, you 'll go to jail.
13. This time, we have 4 candidates for Parliament and 3 candidates for State. Please vote wisely and your vote is your right and it is nobody's bizzness on who you vote for it is PnC.
14. I am not aware of any special lane for the disabled or elderly.
15. Please send the words out to all your foreign friends or employees to avoid being seen near or around all polling centers. They may put themselves in harms way. This is actually a warning to all of them that I got in the internet. Especially those who somehow got blue IC.
Please do read again what I have written and feel free to forward to all your friends, make sure that everyone goes to vote. Every vote counts. This election is most crucial and super dirty.