Tuesday, August 12, 2008

UMNO spent RM218 million...

... on the last 2004 General Election... and that is just for campaign paraphernalia. Read below (taken from Malaysia Today):
Pay up, Umno told

But party says the suit should have been directed at Barisan

(Today Online) - As Malaysia's United Malays National Organisation (Umno) braced itself for the tough Permatang Pauh by-election against opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, the ruling party has been dealt a fresh blow involving an election campaign scandal four years ago, reported Malaysiakini.

The news portal said in the March 2004 general election, Umno received campaign paraphernalia worth hundreds of millions of ringgit including posters, badges and banners — which it had refused to pay for.

The poll merchandise supplier, Elegant Advisory, has since taken the dispute to court.

Last month, the Kuala Lumpur High Court ordered Umno to pay RM218 million claimed by Elegant Advisory, reported Malaysiakini.

The amount is the highest-ever sum of money that Umno — which is the pillar of ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition — has been ordered to pay by a court of law.

The decision was a judgment in default delivered by the High Court on July 17 after Umno's lawyers failed to appear in court.

In response, Umno's treasurer Abdul Azim Mohd Zabidi filed an application in court on July 24 to set aside the judgment. In his affidavit, he argued that Elegant Advisory had sued the wrong body, reported Malaysiakini.

"I am stating that the defendant, Umno, is not a party which contested in the 11th General Election but it was BN, another registered body," he said in the affidavit.

Umno further argued that the campaign materials in question bore the BN's "dacing" (scale) logo, and not the Umno's logo of a "keris" (the traditional Malay dagger).

Malaysiakini said Elegant Advisory executive director Samsudin Ibrahim recently rebutted Mr Abdul Azim's argument that Umno was wrongly cited in the action.

The company contended that "Umno, as the biggest party in BN, has not only used the keris logo during the election but also used the dacing logo widely. BN is not a legal entity but it's a coalition of political parties, with Umno being its biggest party".
Hahaha... lame argument from Abdul Azim... dacing ke... keris ke... it is an open secret that UMNO never pays whatever jobs they ask you to do... selalu 'kencing' kontraktor. But I never thought it in millions!!! Wonder where they gonna get the money to pay from... hem... I can imagine ;) .

Some interesting comments from The Edge 'End the business of political contracts'.

Lim Guan Eng also commented as reported by The Star:
Umno exceeded election spending limit: Guan Eng

GEORGE TOWN: The sum of RM218mil that a High Court has ordered Umno to pay for 2004 general election campaign materials exceeds the 2004 general election spending limit, said DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.

He said in a press statement here Tuesday the Kuala Lumpur High Court judgment meant that the party had exceeded the spending limit of RM94.3mil at the maximum of RM200,000 per parliamentary constituency and RM100,000 per state constituency.

It was reported Tuesday that a High Court deputy registrar had ordered Umno to pay the sum to supplier Elegant Advisory Sdn Bhd for printed materials, transportation and mineral water used by the party in the 2004 general election.

Lim said that under Section 19 of the Election Offences Act 1954, a candidate could not spend more than RM200,000 and RM100,000 respectively for a parliamentary and state constituency.

"Umno had claimed that the campaign materials were for Barisan Nasional and had nothing to do with Umno. With 219 parliamentary seats and 505 state seats contested in the 2004 general elections, this means that a party like Barisan that contested all seats cannot spend more than RM94.3mil or else Barisan's victories are illegal.

"With RM218mil spent whether by Barisan or Umno on campaign materials alone, this is more than double the legally permitted amount," said Lim.

He said that spending above the limits imposed by the Elections Offences Act 1954 was an illegal practice under Section 27, and subject to a fine of RM5,000 by the Sessions Court, disqualification as a wakil rakyat and removal of rights as a voter.

"However, such laws are marked more by its breach than its compliance," he added.

Lim said this might now be an academic question since the 2004 general election had been superseded by the 2008 general election.

"The Election Commission’s failure to act and question the legality of the 2004 general election victories by the Barisan government not only makes a mockery of the very election laws it has drafted but also the spirit of democracy that votes should not be bought and sold," he said. This is typical of the EC... I can imagine the DG lame response... 'I don't have juristriction in this matter'... bla... bla... bla...
But just for thought... if they don't pay... it means that they don't spend... Elegant Advisory Sdn Bhd was suppose to do this for free... that is why no case ler... ;) Maybe this is why EC fail to act... ;)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Aiyah.... u dunno arr...?
So many ACA reports on BN, our PM is just taking it easy & in denial...!

He already knows how we, the rakyat feels about him. But.... he just don't care!

As long got the power, everything can be controlled...!