GEORGE TOWN: An internal dispute four years ago following DAP’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) elections still seems to be haunting the party today.
For one thing, the Registrar of Societies (RoS) almost deregistered the party nearing the 13th General Election in 2013.
Back then, the party’s issue with the RoS had surfaced following complaints by disgruntled party members who brought the matter to the attention of the RoS following alleged irregularities in the vote count during party polls in December 2012, rendering the elected CEC to be declared invalid.
Despite rectified results later, unhappy members still filed complaints with the RoS.
Much has been said about the whole fiasco during the last five years; between the last general election in 2013 until now, with the impending general election having to be called latest by next year.
While DAP leaders are blaming Umno for the whole fracas, Umno leaders shot back claiming that it was DAP’s own party members themselves who started the whole mess by going to the RoS after they were unhappy with the polls result.
DAP’s Lim Kit Siang has warned party members of the possibility that the party is again facing deregistration with the RoS, a familiar warning he issued in 2013, just weeks away from the general election.
Lim has warned party members to come up with contingency plans ahead of the 14th General Election should the usage of the party logo be banned, a deja vu of sorts as the same warning was given in 2013 at the Penang party headquarters in an “emergency press conference”.
(DAP announced in that emergency press conference they would use the PAS symbol in Peninsular Malaysia and the PKR symbol in Sabah & Sarawak for the 13th General Election after it received a letter from the RoS on April 17, 2013 stating that its party poll results were invalid.)
DAP is now accusing Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s press secretary, Datuk Seri Tengku Sariffuddin Tengku Ahmad, of misusing his position in the government to intimidate the party by suggesting that its registration was at risk prior to the upcoming general election.
This came about after Tengku Sariffuddin had last week insisted that the current CEC of the DAP is invalid as it was not recognised by the RoS, which in turn may affect the Opposition party’s chance to contest in the 14th General Election that has to called by August next year.
Tengku Sariffuddin has shot back at the DAP leadership, asking them to blame their own members for the fate of the party being in the hands of the RoS, instead of targeting others, namely Umno.
He was reported as saying that it was DAP’s own members who had lodged complaints to the RoS regarding serious irregularities and unfair treatment in the party elections.
He went on to say that if DAP members were not treated poorly they would not have gone to the RoS to complain and would have even withdrawn the complaint.
He also reminded DAP members that the RoS did not recognise the validity of the party’s CEC, including its secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, based on complaints by its own party members and that Guan Eng, who is also Penang Chief Minister, is currently facing two corruption charges.