Heh, we had our little informal gathering here in Cambridge, right outside our Senate House. Surprisingly, one of us managed to snag some kit from the gathering that they had in London, yesterday. So, we had a BERSIH t-shirt and a banner to add some yellow colour to the whole occasion.
As to the demands of BERSIH, I think that they are fairly logical and fair. I don't really understand why the election commission (SPR) doesn't take more of their ideas into advisement.
- Use of indelible ink
According to the official news, the SPR has agreed to the use of indelible ink to prevent people from voting twice. I personally don't think that this is much of a deterrent as it's too easy to overcome this problem. Either way, the SPR has not purchased any indelible ink yet. Maybe they're waiting till the last minute to do this.
- Disallow all postal votes
I do think that it's unfair for the law to allow some overseas Malaysians to vote while others are not allowed to. Ideally, all Malaysians should be allowed to vote, wherever they are. However, if they are going to censure some Malaysians from exercising their legal right overseas, it is only fair that they censure all Malaysians from voting overseas.
- Cleaning up the voter register
Yes, we really need to fix this problem. There are too many infants and centenarians in our voter register. I didn't believe this until I actually looked up some IC numbers on our SPR website. Surprisingly, there are infants and centenarians in our voter register. If there's even one questionable entry in the list, it makes you wonder about the rest of the list, doesn't it.
- Free and equal access to the media
Now, this is the real difficult bit. It's standard procedure for governments to control the media. It's how governments maintain their grip on power. However, the situation is a little sad when our mainstream media is directly owned by political parties. There isn't much that the SPR can do about this, unfortunately.