Ex-polls panel chief denies role in fake Ics
Published on: Friday, September 23, 2011
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Kuala Lumpur: Former Election Commission (EC) chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman has denied involvement in the alleged issuance of thousands of "fake identity cards" to foreign workers in Sabah back in the 1990s.A news portal had on Tuesday reported that a leaked United States embassy cable posted on WikiLeaks revealed that he had admitted to issuing more than 60,000 fake Malaysian identity cards in Sabah on Umno's instructions.

"That can't be true. I had nothing to do at all with this and I was never involved in issuing Ics.

"What the EC did was only to register citizens with ICs as voters," he said, adding that IC matters were within the National Registration Department's prerogative.

The cable quoted former Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections (Mafrel) chief Malek Husin as claiming that Rashid had confessed this to him during a private meeting at the latter's house on Oct 25, 2006.

It also stated that Malek was said to have informed the US embassy officials that Rashid allegedly confirmed that this strategy was meant to wrest political control of Sabah which was held until 1994 by then opposition front Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS).

During that decade, claimed the cable, Umno had granted citizenship and Malaysian identity cards to over 600,000 foreign migrant workers (predominantly Muslims from Indonesia and Mindanao in the Philippines) in Sabah, in exchange for their votes in state Assembly Elections.

Rahman, who sounded shocked upon the startling claim, said he had never abused his power as a civil servant throughout his tenure.

"I don't remember telling Malek anything. Besides, as a civil servant, I know what my limits are and following etiquette we don't encroach on other people's job," he said.

Rashid however recalled being informed by the opposition parties in Sabah about an allegation of registering foreigners as voters.

"They then asked me to check the ICs of these people, which I refused as this was not within our authority but NRD's."


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