PUTRAJAYA: The Election Commission (EC) has vowed to make the 13th General Election the best it has ever conducted, dismissing the common perception that it could be the nation's 'dirtiest'.
Chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof said the EC's preparations had been thorough and it had made many changes to achieve the objective.
The changes include early voting for the police, military, media and Malaysian citizens abroad and the use of indelible ink to mark voters to prevent them voting more than once, he said.
"If it becomes a bit dirty here and there, it would not be because of the EC. The political parties and their supporters must respect the law. They must follow the guidelines and the (election) code of ethics.
"I hope the leaders of all political parties will advise their members and supporters to be rational and not be too emotional.
Follow the law, follow the rule and follow the advice of the police and the EC," he told a special news conference at the EC headquarters, here.
Abdul Aziz also said that this time the EC had made at least 19 changes to improve the election process.
If the existing laws, guidelines and code of ethics were complied with, it would result in a peaceful election, he said.
Commenting on the RM400 million allocated to the EC to conduct the general election, he said one of the reasons for the rise in cost was the increase in the number of voters.
He said the EC set April 20 for nomination and May 5 for polling after taking into consideration many factors, including the weather.
"The dates are also free of important events. They don't coincide with any important event involving the various communities in Malaysia.
Going by the EC's experience, he said, the first result of the election would be known as early as 7.30 pm on May 5. -- BERNAMA