Below is a press statement issued by the MCA Youth Strategic Planning Bureau.
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By Neil Foo
Pakatan leaders continue to call for clean and fair elections but in reality, they have misled Pakatan supporters by SPREADING MISINFORMATION, repeatedly sending out the same baseless allegation via social media so that netizens will believe them, to the extent that international news agencies have also quoted their allegations.
The false accusations about blackouts at the tallying centres or of foreign workers appearing at voting centres still continued to be spread to voters despite such incidents being either inconclusive or never having happened at all. Unfortunately, many netizens have disseminated such misinformation of the election being tainted.
On one hand, Pakatan leaders have accepted the general election results. But on the other hand, they still accuse the polls as fraudulent. Without confirming facts, Pakatan leaders spread news of election irregularities via the internet and social media, that netizens believed them. This is highly irresponsible of Pakatan.
According to legal procedures for the elections, candidates are required to appoint polling and counting agents. Hence, allegations of fraud are nonsense. To ensure that the entire process is free of doubt, the candidates’ polling and counting agents must sign Form 14 to show that they agree to the votes tabulated for the respective voting stream (saluran). The said Form 14 is later signed by the Election Commission staff to determine the legality of the results of the said polling streams.
If re-elections are needed as Pakatan presses for on the grounds of so-called fraud, then does this not tantamount to Pakatan’s polling and counting agents being asleep on the job? All election Pemantau (observers) should question their conscience if they really witnessed any phantom voters.
Statement released on 14 May 2013
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I’ve marked several segments of Neil Foo’s press statement above in bold red for further discussion.
(1) “baseless allegation via social media”
The DAP cybertroopers have been actively operating for six years already, blared The Star in its front page 48 hours before our country went to the polls.
Why did not, at any time during those past six years, the MCA-owned newspaper take up and focus on the issue of how the opposition cybertroopers have been running smear campaigns, spreading lies, making baseless allegations as well as slandering and character assassinating DAP critics?
(2) “to the extent that international news agencies have also quoted their allegations”
The MCA is now complaining that the false accusations spread through the social media – where the DAP is king of the hill – have been quoted by international news agencies.
Isn’t Malaysia’s biggest media conglomerate, the Star Media Group which is a billions-ringgit valued business entity, under the supervision of the MCA?
Since the answer is a resounding Yes, then why is it that the Wild, Wild West cowboy town social media is the one which has control over the narrative? So much so that the international news media are said by the MCA to believe in what has been maliciously misrepresented through Facebook and Twitter or YouTube or disseminated through other new media channels regarding a fraudulent general election (GE13)?
Is there any particular reason for the Star Media Group – which has a reach to an audience of 5.63 million – not making any effort to counter the false rumours which have hurt the BN in the eyes of the international media as complained by the MCA press statement cited above?
In fact, the press statement itself that is by MCA’s Neil Foo is not even carried by The Star.
(3) “many netizens have disseminated such misinformation of the election being tainted”
Why did the MCA-owned and -controlled biggest media network in the country fail to alert its 5.63 million audience at any time over the past six years that the standard operating procedure of the opposition cyber agents — finally and too late reported on The Star front page story headlined ‘Troopers storm cyberspace’ (3 May 2013) – is to fabricate unfounded accusations and concoct the most outrageous and outright lies?
If more Malaysians were to be sufficiently convinced to treat with a degree of scepticism the (mis)information spread online, then the manufactured news about ‘blackout’ and ‘phantom voters’ would not have received traction.
And now the MCA chooses to bleat that netizens believe in the unreliable social media.
Hullo MCA! Your own newspaper is the one most responsible for publicizing and popularizing the Pakatan Twitterati.
(4) “Pakatan leaders spread news of election irregularities via the internet and social media”
Why is the MCA complaining about this matter now when it is their own media group which has popularized the Pakatan leaders? There have been many, many instances when the credibility of the opposition leaders could have been effectively challenged by the media. Instead, the MCA-owned media took the opposite course of action and covered up for their favourite Pakatan politicians.
Furthermore, the DAP election ‘expert’ who made the claim about “3.3 million problematic voters” on the electoral roll is one of The Star‘s most favourite people. The Star‘s Twitter programme gave Ong Kian Ming more than 5 hours of airtime in a single interview session as well as The Star‘s SwitchUp.tv invited him to be one of the earliest guests for their election coverage.
If the MCA’s own media elects to lionize the Pakatan leaders, then the MCA has little cause to be whinging now. After all, it is the MCA-owned media which has done a lot of covert and even overt campaigning to return the DAP and evangelista politicians to power on May 5.
(5) about polling agents and Form 14
The MCA spokesman has made a solid rebuttal to the ‘blackout’ rumours in bringing up the matter of the candidate-appointed agents being required to sign the form to say that the proceedings had been above board. If there had been blackouts, the agents could have withheld their signatures on the form in protest.
So how come The Star did not report the MCA Youth Strategic Planning Bureau statement on this? ‘Past Week’ Google searches in http://www.thestar.com.my turned up zero results.
(6) “All election Pemantau (observers) should question their conscience if they really witnessed any phantom voters.“
The MCA has asked the election observers to question their conscience. The observers were only on duty at the most 10-plus hours on 5 May 2013.
It is rather the MCA that should question their own conscience with regard to stabbing the BN in the back over the past 6 years.
When the BN does its detailed postmortem on the Chinese Tsunami, a most pertinent subject to put under the microscope is how could the owner of Malaysia’s biggest and most influential media conglomerate lose 90 percent of the Chinese electorate?
It defies logic. Unless sections of the MCA themselves were colluding with their media to backstab the BN.