Did SPR put the wrong label on the GE15 ballot box, in an attempt to cheat voters?!
Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : SPR Mislabel GE15 Ballot Box To Cheat Voters!
Voting for GE15 is over, but fake news about the 15th General Election continues to flow…
People have been sharing this video and message on WhatsApp, and social media, claiming that it’s evidence the Malaysia Election Commission (SPR) put the wrong label on the ballot box, in an attempt to cheat the voters!
👆SPR, put wrong label on the ballot box.
Pointed out, by one of the voters. Lucky, she was sharp eyed!
They’d pulled, the same dishonest stunt, in GE14!
Truth : SPR Did NOT Mislabel GE15 Ballot Box To Cheat Voters!
That is yet another example of FAKE NEWS circulating on WhatsApp and social media, and here are the reasons why…
Fact #1 : This Video Was Recorded During GE14
The viral message falsely claimed that this video was recorded today, during GE15 – the 15th General Election.
This video was definitely recorded during the 14th General Election on 9 May 2018, because no one in this video was wearing a face mask.
The COVID-19 outbreak only started in December 2019, and became a pandemic only in March 2020. Hence, no one wore a face mask during the 14th General Election.
The volunteers and SPR officials at the polling station would also be wearing a face mask, because they may have to deal with COVID-19 positive voters.
The most definitive evidence that this was recorded during GE14 is this – the ballot paper colours.
In GE14, the Parliament ballot was orange in colour, while the State ballot was yellow in colour.
In GE15, the Parliament ballot was white in colour, while the State ballot was peach in colour.
As you can see in this screenshot from the video – the ballots are yellow and orange in colour. So this video was definitely recorded on 9 May 2018, during GE14.
Fact #3 : Ballot Box Mix-Up Happened A Few Times During GE14
The mislabelling incident appears to start off with people who voted early accidentally dropping their ballots into the wrong boxes. It didn’t help that the two ballot colours are so similar!
Then people who voted later simply dropped their ballots according to the existing colour in the ballot boxes, without actually checking the box label. That led people to accuse SPR officials of mislabelling the ballot boxes.
In the end, the affected ballot boxes contained a mix of Parliament and State ballots, instead of strictly Parliament OR State ballots.
This was the reason why I recommended that the first voters of the day should check the ballot box labels before dropping in their ballots.
Fact #4 : Ballot Box Mixing Won’t Affect Votes
There was a lot of outrage from voters in GE14, who felt at that time that the SPR would invalidate the votes that were dropped into the wrong box.
The truth is – dropping the ballot into the wrong box will NOT void the vote. As BERSIH explained back in 2018:
This will not impact your vote because before all votes are tallied, all ballot papers will be sorted by colour.
Even SPR officials or voters repeat the same mistake in GE15, this will NOT invalidate your vote.
Please WATCH OUT about such FAKE NEWS on WhatsApp and social media. They are designed to reduce voter confidence in the electoral process.
Regardless of what you may read or see on social media, please have faith in the electoral process, which is safeguarded by the Malaysian civil service and many volunteers.
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.
He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.
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