Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Zulkifli Noordin made a comparison of a badminton match and reflects his ignorance on unfairness of Malaysia’s electoral system

Utusan Malaysia published an article that was produced by Vice president of PertubuhanPribumi Malaysia (PERKASA) ZulkifliNoordin yesterday. The article entitled “GE13 popular vote myth” refuted Pakatan Rakyat (PR)’s claim of unfairness on the “first-past-the-post” system under the BarisanNasional (BN)’s administration. 

His article was written as below and I quote: 
“Bayangkan dalam pertandingan akhir badminton Piala All-Malaysia di mana Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak menentang Anwar, keputusannya seperti berikut:  
1. Set 1 - Najib 21 Anwar 19; 
2. Set 2 - Anwar 21 Najib 03; 
3. Set 3 - Najib 21 Anwar 19.  
Apabila pengadil mengumumkan Najib menang dengan 2-1, Anwar tiba-tiba bangkit melalak mendakwa dia patut menang kerana mendapat 59 poin atau 57% daripada jumlah keseluruhan point pertandingan (sebanyak 104); sedangkan Najib hanya mendapat 45 point atau 43% daripada keseluruhan point pertandingan!” 
This article reflects Zulkifli Noordin’s ignorance of Malaysia’s unfair political system that is dying under BN’s administration for more than 50 years. 

I am shocked because Zulkifli Noordin dared to use a badminton match as a yardstick for comparison. It is undeniable that, that is the badminton competition regulation. The question remains if Zulkifli Noordin realizes the umpire has to be just and fair. Does he realise that both parties who are competing in the badminton match are playing on an level playing field? 

Malaysia’s electoral system has lost both important aspects to maintain irs independence and fairness. It is true that Malaysia adopted the “first-past-the-post” system as United Kingdom. However, the main problem is the redelineation exercise resulting in vast difference in terms of sizes among various parliamentary seat. 

The Election Commission (EC) gave various reasons for this. Amongst the reasons, rural seats are drawn up with smaller scale to facilitate their representatives in providing better services to rural area citizens. The reality remains that some other rural seats are drawn up bigger in terms of its size. For example, Hulu Selangor parliamentary seat has more than 80,000 voters while Sabak Bernam and Tanjung Karang are just half of it, even although these seats are located in rural area. 

Furthermore, PR was not allowed a just and fair access to mainstream media especially print media, English and Bahasa Malaysia language television and radio stations. This is one of the biggest obstacles for PR to present its manifesto to rural area people who mostly, depended on mainstream media to receive information on election. 

How can an unjust and biased situation like this being taken in comparison to a badminton match that has more just and fair regulations? Perhaps, Zulkifli Noordin has his answer. In fact, majority Malaysians rejected BN in administering Malaysia with only 47% of popular votes whereas 51% voters chose PR.

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