KUALA BESUT: A simulation exercise of the Kuala Besut by-election voting process conducted by the Election Commission (EC) yesterday showed that the indelible ink is still visible despite repeated washing.
Two EC staff and three media representatives dipped their left index fingers in purple ink at Besut District Office under the watchful eyes of EC academic director Abdullah Jusoh.
“Once dipped, the indelible ink should be left for about 30 seconds to dry. The EC found that the ink colour still shows even after washing,” said EC chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof in a statement distributed to the media who attended the simulation.
He said to stain the finger with indelible ink, the voters should ensure that their fingers were not greasy fingers before dipped into the ink bottle.
The voters were also advised not to use indelible ink on the finger to mark the ballot paper because the EC has provided pens at each ballot box.
The EC also provided voting procedures, including how to dip the finger into the ink bottle, posted at all voting channels as guide for voters.
Abdul Aziz said the use of indelible ink in Kuala Besut by-election does not violate Islamic law and is also safe in terms of health.
“The EC accepted the decision of the National Fatwa Council that the use of indelible ink does not violate the requirements of Islamic law. We also sent indelible ink samples to the Chemistry Department for testing in terms of the materials used and held discussions with the Ministry of Health.”
Speaking to the media after the simulation, Abdullah said each voter has to dip at least one segment of the left index finger in a bottle of indelible ink.
“If there is no index finger, the voter can use the other left hand fingers and if there is none, he can use the right hand fingers.
“If there is no hand, we use the same procedure as in the last general election, by using a brush to stain the arm or shoulder,” he added.
One of the media representatives involved in the simulation, Khor Chun Kiat admitted the ink was still there even after repeated washing.
“I first washed the finger after 20 minutes and washed it a second time ten minutes later. Although the colour faded, there was still ink on the finger,” said Khor who was from Sin Chew Daily.
A representative of the PAS candidate, Wan Azhar Wan Ahmad who witnessed the simulation expressed satisfaction with the technical aspect.
“We hope that problems that arose during the last general election such as fading ink does not recur,” he said.
The indelible ink will be used for advance voting this Saturday (July 20) and regular voting on July 24.
The Kuala Besut state by-election sees a straight fight between Tengku Zaihan Che Ku Abd Rahman of Barisan Nasional (BN) and [email protected] Yusof of PAS. — Bernama