Monday, May 21, 2012

Any food, drinks or vouchers at the by-election rallies?

I am just wondering out aloud... Did either the WP or PAP rally involve any supply of free food, drinks, vouchers or other gifts?

Political parties should be aware that treating is an offence under the Parliamentary Elections Act.

58. —(1) A person shall be guilty of treating if he corruptly, by himself or by any other person, either before, during or after an election, directly or indirectly gives or provides, or pays wholly or in part the expense of giving, any meat, drink, refreshment, cigarette, entertainment or other provision or thing or any money or ticket or other means or device to enable the procuring of any such meat, drink, refreshment, cigarette, entertainment or other provision or thing, to or for any person —

(a) for the purpose of corruptly influencing that person or any other person to vote or refrain from voting;

(b) for the purpose of inducing that person to attend or remain at any election meeting;

(c) on account of any such person or any other person having voted or refrained from voting or being about to vote or refrain from voting at the election; or

(d) on account of any such person having attended an election meeting.

(2) A person shall also be guilty of treating if he corruptly accepts or takes any such meat, drink, refreshment, cigarette, entertainment or other provision or thing or any such money or ticket or who adopts any other means or device to enable the procuring of such meat, drink, refreshment, cigarette, entertainment or other provision or thing

It is clear that treating for the purpose inducing persons to attend a rally or to remain at the rally is an offence. So, has anyone attended these rallies? Do you have knowledge of infringement of this law?


Eric said...

Wasn't there this video of a particularly elderly folk attending a rally saying that she was supplied transport, refreshments and lunch?

Subra said...

You are referring to the following video, I guess:

That was at GE 2011.

I was wondering if there was any instance of that now.

Eric said...

hur hur... this same point was referred to in Pritam Singh's rally speech last night.

Yours Toothfully said...

I've always thought it's "common practice". Never knew it's against the law.

Eric said...

btw.. are rallies covered by privilege?

Anonymous said...

So easy, the PAP did not provide the treats but the PA/RC/CC did

sgcynic said...

Nasi Lemak mai hum is fine.

Even though the election law may state no loittering within 200m of a polling station, it was be declared that loittering within the polling station itself does not controvene the law.

Hence my firm conviction providing any food and drink is no harm.

Subra said...

Eric... Privilege as a defence to defamation? Well, qualified privilege does not apply in this context and in the past PAP members have successfully sued opposition members for defamtion arising out of rally speeches.

Subra said...

Anon... it is an offence if PAP provides it directly or indirectly. It is also an offence if PA/CC/RC provides it... The offence covers any person carrying out the treating

Anonymous said...

the lady is from a walkover GRC,
Dun need to vote. and its a rally not a election meeting ?

Dun need to induce, influence and ....

Subra said...

@Anon 11.47pm

Yes, if you are referring to the youtube video on the last election, that was a tanjong pagar resident. So, no issue of the treating being used to influence the voter to vote in a particular way.

the only issue is whether the food was used as an enticement or 'inducement' to attend the election rally. incidentally, election 'meeting' is defined as 'rally'.

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