Less EC fund for state polls

PUTRAJAYA: The Election Commission (EC) wants to slash the Sarawak state election budget estimated at RM181 million by up to 15 per cent.

Its chairman, Datuk Seri Mohd Hashim Abdullah said the cut, in line with a review of the 2016 Budget by the government, will not affect the electoral process.

“In order to reduce spending for the 11th Sarawak state election, we (EC) have negotiated with various parties, including the suppliers, to seek for a price cut.

“We believe the cut and frugal measures will not affect the election which will proceed smoothly,” he said in his first press conference as the EC chairman here, yesterday.

Mohd Hashim said the EC was in talks with the Ministry of Finance (MOF) to assess the appropriate amount of budget for the Sarawak state election.

“The MOF wants us to come up with a figure but we can’t do so as we are still negotiating. We hope there will be not much reduction as this involves quality.

“Sarawak has many remote areas which call on us to use the helicopter and other vehicles as the mode of transport.”

Mohd Hashim urged Sarawak voters to check their names with state constituencies in line with the redelineation exercise, which was passed and gazetted recently.

“This will enable the voters affected to know in advance where they will vote in the Sarawak state election. Over 159,871 voters are affected due to the increase of state seats from 71 to 82 seats,” he added.

Voters can check by calling 03-8892 7000 or online at the EC website www.spr.gov.my or via SMS by typing SPR SEMAK, identity card number, and send to 15888. — Bernama

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