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Sunday, April 27, 2008

"Independent" Malaysian Election Commission depending on families of deceased voters to help clean up electoral roll?

theStar Online reported the Malaysian Election Commission appealing to family members of registered voters who have passed away to submit death certificates to help the commission to "clean up" the electoral roll.

Come on. Does the Election Commission really have to depend on the family members? For all you know, such deceased voters may not have left any family behind, so how to clean up the electoral role?

The National Registration Department which is tasked with keeping track of birth and death of Malaysian residents is fully computerized. I know because I went not too long ago to get a copy of my daughter's birthday certificate. With a few key strokes and not more than half an hour, I have a copy of my daughter's birth certificate in my hand. Is it not easier for the Election Commission to cooperate with the fully computerized National Registration Department to clean up the electoral roll of deceased voters? They have records of all deceased residents of Malaysia in their computer system.

Why go the hard way of asking families of deceased voters to come forward? Some of them may not even read the newspapers, so how do you get your message to them, and even if they did, would they bother?

If the Election Commission is really sincere in cleaning up the electoral roll, I am sure this is an easier path.

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