Latest News:  


Malaysian opposition claims ruling party rigged elections

(China Daily)

08:35, May 07, 2013

Wearing a bright blue shirt and a grim expression, Prime Minister Najib Razak appeared before the media on Monday to somberly acknowledge that his coalition had won general elections for the 13th time in a row. But it was hardly the look of the victorious.

Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim called for a rally in two days' time to protest a victory he said was achieved via the "worst electoral fraud in our history" and which saw the ruling camp win with a minority of the vote.

Najib's National Front coalition that has ruled since independence in 1957 held off a spirited opposition challenge to retain a firm parliamentary majority.

But the opposition called a rally for Wednesday in a stadium on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur to denounce what it called foul play. "I call upon as many Malaysians to join hands and express our rejection and disgust at the unprecedented electoral fraud committed by Najib Razak and the EC (Election Commission)," Anwar said.

The conduct of the polls was a "crime" against Malaysians, the 65-year-old said earlier in an interview. "The government has lost its legitimacy."

Supporters of the three-party Pakatan Rakyat (People's Pact) opposition alliance were left bitter and despondent after an election which they hoped would bring a historic change of government.

Barisan won 133 seats in the 222-member parliament, two fewer than in the last parliament. The opposition alliance won 89 seats, an increase of 14, largely at the expense of non-aligned candidates.

But the ruling bloc won just 48 percent of the popular vote compared to nearly 52 percent for the opposition.

This makes Najib the first leader in four decades to win with a minority of the ballots, according to Malaysian media. Critics said the figure proved the electoral system was skewed in the government's favor.

Najib, 59, who had promised free and fair polls and has since brushed off numerous allegations of irregularities, was sworn in by the king in Kuala Lumpur.

Anwar said the opposition would look into fraud allegations in dozens of constituencies and decide "whether (to file) election petitions or to go to the courts".

Azizuddin Sani, a politics expert at Universiti Utara Malaysia, said it would be "very difficult" to challenge the result. "Anwar can complain, but I don't think it will change the results," he said.

Pakatan has made major inroads in recent years under Anwar - a former Barisan star who was ousted and jailed by the regime in a 1998 power struggle - by capitalizing on public fatigue with corruption and authoritarianism.

Outraged voters took to the Internet in droves to complain that indelible ink which Najib touted as a guarantee against multiple voting was found to easily wash off.

Videos, pictures and first-hand accounts of angry citizens confronting purportedly foreign "voters" at polling centers also went viral online.

Anwar has alleged there was a scheme to fly tens of thousands of "dubious" and possibly foreign voters to sway the outcome in key constituencies.

Najib, who took office in 2009, has faced rising public calls for reform.

He has responded with limited liberalization moves dismissed by critics as cosmetic steps that dodge deep change to avoid upsetting a ruling Malay elite.

We recommend:

New Dutch King Willem-Alexander sworn in

See the remarkable photos of April

May Day protests around the globle

People rally to urge immigration policy

Greek Orthodox Patriarch's washing of feet ceremony

101.73-carat diamond to be auctioned in Geneva

Email|Print|Comments(Editor:LiangJun、Yao Chun)

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. China's WZ-10 armed helicopter

  2. Pakistani soldiers carry electoral materials

  3. Photos of the week (April 29 - May 5)

  4. Crackdown on sale of overused pesticide

  5. People have pets trimmed

  6. Beijing welcomes longest subway line

  7. Hong Kong's ducky desserts popular

  8. Rare pigeon blood rubies

  9. Top 10 most profitable public companies

  10. Spring hopes maids will draw numbers

Most Popular


  1. North Korea testing limits of tolerance
  2. China's multifaceted financial diplomacy benefits all
  3. H7N9 won't affect China’s economy significantly
  4. Private retirement system to benefit China
  5. Bill Gates: Innovation from China boosts agricultural development in Africa
  6. Not much stomach for mutton over fear of fake
  7. South Korean President Park's US visit carries hope
  8. Young Chinese face hard road to happiness
  9. Commentary: Abe walks on dangerous path
  10. Celebrity diving show 'excessive': People's Daily

What’s happening in China

2 killed, 1 injured in man's street knife attacks in Beijing | Attacker named

  1. China reports 2 new H7N9 cases
  2. Vast transport network to link Disneyland
  3. 1,100 remain hospitalized after Lushan quake
  4. Ford Mondeo airbags fail to explode in accident
  5. Free dictionaries found to be pirated