BN kept Malaysia, thanks to postal and advance votesThe ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) regained control of Putrajaya in Election 2013 - thanks to the controversial postal and advanced votes which gave it victory in 22 parliamentary seats, according to research by respected pollsters, the Merdeka Center.
Without the postal and advanced votes, the BN's MIC would be without two of its representatives in the Cabinet, Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam (Segamat) and Datuk Seri G. Palanivel (Cameron Highlands), and several seats in Johor and the Federal Territory would have fallen to Pakatan Rakyat (PR).
More importantly, without the comfort of these 22 parliamentary seats, chairman Datuk Seri Najib Razak's BN would have ended up with 111 parliamentary seats, the same number as PR.
This new information was revealed in a voting pattern study by the Merdeka Center, which was obtained by The Malaysian Insider this past week.
Data from different voting channels from the 222 parliamentary seats was analysed using a two-step cluster system designed to uncover natural groupings or clusters.
The study was able to show the voting patterns in Election 2013 and confirmed the rural and urban divide in Malaysia as well as the 20% swing of Chinese voters away from the ruling BN.
The Merdeka Center noted that without advance and postal votes, BN would have lost 22 parliamentary seats. This finding will cause heartache for opposition politicians who have been campaigning for the past few years for the abolishment of postal voters, arguing that it provides opportunities for fraud.
Following the general election on May 5, PKR, DAP and PAS filed petitions seeking to nullify election results in several constituencies. Chief among their complaints was postal and advance voting fraud, pointing the few votes the opposition received through these channels was far fewer than the support shown by ordinary voters across Malaysia.
The Election Commission (EC) said that there were some 372,000 advance or postal voters and they included security forces, EC workers and the media. Their presence in any parliamentary constituency is significant considering how closely fought the election was. On average there were about 1,100 postal votes and 800 advance voters in every constituency.
The Merdeka Center said that after stripping and analysing the data, it concluded that BN could have lost as many as 30 parliamentary seats if it did not have the postal/advance votes.
These constituencies were: Segamat (93.3% of the postal and advance votes for BN), Bagan Serai (82.6% for BN), Muar (87.2% for BN), Pulai (88.8% for BN), Jerai (74.2% for BN), Balik Pulau (89.5% for BN), Machang (79.2% for BN), Labis (89.75% for BN), Kuala Selangor (71.7% for BN), Beaufort (71.7% for BN), Kuala Kangsar (76% for BN), Hulu Selangor (83.9% for BN), Sungai Besar (75.1% for BN), Baram (89.2% for BN), Kulim-Bandar Baharu (88.8% for BN), Pasir Gudang (89% for BN), Tangga Batu (86.4% for BN), Titiwangsa (78.9% for BN), Tasek Gelugor (68% for BN), Tenom (87.6% for BN), Bentong (89.9% for BN), Cameron Highlands (91.3% for BN), Merbok (80.5% for BN), Ketereh (81.6% for BN), Setiawangsa (81.9% for BN), Mas Gading (72.3% for BN) and Keningau (78.4% for BN).
Among the notable politicians in Parliament today only because of advance and postal votes is MIC president Palanivel (pic). He won his Cameron Highlands seat by 462 votes. And this after snaring 91.3% of the advance and postal votes.
Also fortunate was Datuk Chua Tee Yong, MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek' son. He won the Labis seat by 353 votes. His share of advance and postal votes: 89.7%.
In its report, the Merdeka Centre concluded that "the implication of advance and postal voting on this election will certainly figure strongly as civil society and the Opposition continue to pressure the EC for further reforms of the electoral process." - August 12, 2013.