S.Subramaniam seated left is one of the three candidates vying for seats in this year MIC party election.

S.Subramaniam seated left is one of the three candidates vying for seats in this year MIC party election.

Less than a week before the September 12 MIC election, a group of candidates have asked the party’s election committee to implement several measures to reflect a more transparent and open election process such as changing the campaign deadline and having transparency in the vote counting process.

Speaking to reporters here on Monday, the spokesman for the group, S.P.Manivasagum, said that they had recommended several measures to the election committee through a letter sent today to the party headquarters, among others suggesting that the campaign deadline be changed from 12 noon Sept 11, to midnight on that day, similar to past elections.

Under the present ruling, he said, candidates would miss the opportunity to canvass support from delegates, many of whom would be arriving in the city throughout the day on September 11.

He also pointed out that party president Datuk Seri S.Samy Vellu would host a presidential dinner on the night of Sept 11 for all delegates and the group wanted the opportunity for all candidates to campaign and this was only possible if the campaign deadline was extended to midnight.

“But we are not questioning the integrity of the election committee. We want to see a more smoother election and we want to help the election committee to have a hassle free election,” said Manivasagum, a Central Working Committee (CWC) candidate.

A large group of CWC candidates were present at the news conference along with one vice-presidential candidate, P.Subramaniam.

All of them are the ‘unofficial candidates’, not endorsed by party president Datuk Seri S.Samy Vellu who had come out with his own 27 candidates for the CWC seats as well as three candidates for the vice presidential post.

Manivasagum said based on past elections experiences, the voting area, set up on the stage of the Merdeka Hall of the Putra World Trade Centre, had been too congested.

They proposed that booths be set up at the ground level and that there be sufficient space between the booths.

Another matter that they hoped would be addressed by the election committee, was that candidates and their agents be allowed into the counting room, and that recounting be allowed if the difference was less than 100 votes.

Manivasagum said the group also had requested that the number of counting booths be confirmed in advance so that adequate numbers of counting agents could be prepared by the respective candidates.

“The counting process is the pinnacle of the entire election process…a high degree of transparency and openess needs to be upheld during the process,” he said.

The group also proposed the installation of close circuit TV cameras (CCTV)to supervise and ensure the smooth operation of the election process whereby in case of protests and doubts the CCTV recording could be an important source of evidence to resolve them. — BERNAMA