Election handouts are bribes, says watchdog

| 01/04/2011

(CNS): Any type of handout to voters during elections is a form of corruption, an anti-graft watchdog group said this week in Malaysia. Datuk Paul Low (left), president of Transparency International said that any enticement for votes during elections was considered corruption, according to various media reports from the country. “There have been a lot of arguments on vote buying, enticing voters via money, ‘sewing machines’, we believe that this is corrupt practice. When you give these sweeteners, what would be the motivation? Any enticing for votes, we believe that is corruption,” said Low, speaking in Kuala Lumpur during the campaign of a crucial state by-election.

His remarks were aimed at a local minister who said that financial assistance to voters during elections was not a form corruption because it was the federal government’s way of “fulfilling its promises”.

“We have already promised that if we won we would fulfill our manifesto … for example a sewing machine, if we do not give it during elections we will give it after elections, is that a crime? We cannot stop this because, well, we will be giving it after (elections),” said the minister in the country’s parliament this week.

The watch dog representative said there was a lot of abuse in the campaign for the Sarawak state by-election and law reform concerning elections was needed .

“It is sad to say that politics is no longer just about serving people, it has become money-making for the elected representatives,” he said.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    They all give hand-outs Everyone!!! some give big money to share up -some give loads of fill – some give washers -and dryers, fridge and even stoves. some buy school uniforms for kids. wellbuying the uniforms for the kids not a bad
    idea-but it would be nice to hear if they still contact these kids to see how they are doing. All polititians are guilty

    • Anonymous says:

      We hear anecdotally that it is common practice in many districts leading up to elections.  If true, we could fill the prisons several times over with all of the crookedness that goes on. 

      Though it may happen, I am appalled that so many seem to feel they have permission to surrender their values when confronted with obvious corruption, applying the excuse that "everybody is doing it".    

      By entertaining the acceptance of these "gifts" you become a party to the criminality taking place, regardless of whether a product of solicitation from that person or from extortion by yourself.  

      You can choose to be a moral person or not.  No politician or business person should have any sway over your values or ethics.  Unless you already have a compromised value system.    

  2. Anonymous says:

    Politicians can only hand out sweet things if somebody is eager enough, desperate enough, or ignorant enough to take them. Start educating those people who are willing to accept those handouts are just not worth it in the long run.

    At least teach them that they can accept the handout and still put an X next to another name because nobody will ever know…..:)!

  3. Yo Mama says:

    Why doesn’t some enterprising young journalist simply ask McKeeva Bush at the next press conference if he has been involved in giving washing machines and other gifts to voters immediately prior to elections.

    I think we would all love to hear the answer to that.

    Just ask. Given the rumors and stories we all hear, it’s a fair question.

    • Lachlan MacTavish says:

       Any politician is smart enough to be able to say  "I never gave anything to anybody".

      If I was running in Cayman and needed to get votes because I wasn’t the best person for the job and wanted to prey on the good nature of honest hard working Caymanian voters I would have third person runners go around to everyone the night before an election and give the voter $100.00 dolla bill and say " Lach MacTavish wants you to vote tomorrow, please go and vote your conscience". I would also go to every mother in my district who had the ability to influence her kids and grand children what to do and see if she needed a washin machine or some home repairs done.

      The runners are simply getting the wote out and the washin machine is takin care of my future district.

      Askin the question will not produce any answers with politicians who know how to use the system.

      • Anonymous says:

        People that accept the $100 bribe may be hard working, but the are not honest people.  Bribery is not a political system unless the voters have a natural predilection to corruption.  Once they accept the money they share equally in the shame. 


    • Anonymous9 says:

      Why? All he will do is point his chubby finger at someone else and try to get up to leave.

  4. Madhatter says:

    Dangit! Do I have to give that pool back that MacJuJu put in for me at my house on the bluff?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Would the members of the Commission for Standards in Public Life care to publish their views on whether vote buying and related activities are considered an acceptable or a corrupt practice in the Cayman Islands?

    If the members are not sure then I would suggest that Commission should be scrapped as a cost saving measure.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Hope UDP, PPM and Co. are reading this.

    And the Gubna too.

    Doubt however if any of them reading this will cause even time to think about it….they’ll likely go right to defending why the poor people them need a new washer (coincidentally right at election time mostly).

    • I cant wait to see a change from this, it is a disgusting thing. If ever I have a problem it is with these so called politicians giving out hand outs for a vote. Whats wrong with earning that vote.
      The voters are also to blame, if they had any integrity whether they be poor or not, they would not take a bribe. So many hide behind the poverty scam. I am 70 years old and can honestly say that I have never taken a bribe from any one. I know that I will never do so either, I want my children / grand children to be honest upright citizens therefore I lead by example.
      Please folks you get what you pay for and by taking bribes these are the types of politicians that we get.You paid for them by accepting their bribes.

      Cayman can be saved from the demons but only with your honesty when its election time.

  7. dollas nah run right sa says:

    Wa unnah guyin on wid mann unnah doing away with another Cayman tradition unnnah try hush mannn voters not going to get a single ting now from these jokers. The vote will be now renderred useless. no more loads of dirt fi mi yard

  8. Anonymous says:

    Now this would be an interesting speaker to invite to the Cayman Islands to give a presentation on corruption. That would be far more valuable to the people of these islands than any of the trips the Premier has taken.

  9. Anonymous says:

    That may be true, but so what?!  Are bribes even illegal here? 

  10. The Crown says:

    Oh & the next thing i would love to see perused Mr Low,(if your logged on) is harmful,strategic immigration notibly by government’s,elitist,cravenites & the like. In particular the feasibility of such against a mild mannered & for the most part a dove like people. 

    • Anonymous says:

      mild mannered? dove-like?!  not the people I know.  Angry maybe… 

      • Jonathan says:

        That’s what happens when you take sweetness for weakness. With all due respect to Mr. Low I do not need him or anyone else to tell me that this is wrong on all counts as I have seen the evidence of the act and the consequences which follow. To those who accept these bribes you have sold yourself, your country, and your children up the river for a pittance and the price paid in reality for that appliance or whatever is astronomically higher. Those who do these things wish to keep you in subjugation and there is a special corner in the pit of hell for them. To those who would wish to perpetuate a welfare state in their despicable clawing for power at the expense of all I say this: there is no washing machine in the world which could remove the toxic grime and the stench which you have stained the Cayman Islands with and it is time for those responsible to be identified as the charlatan scum which they truly and undeniably are and their permanent removal from any sphere of influence is direly needed..

  11. The Crown says:

    Ummm,hmmm… boy Mac there’s not any longer just a dim light to pay mind to,ummhp,umm. Ummhp,um the light now is the one at the airport. Oh well, this is only twenty year’s or so late. 

  12. Dennie Warren Jr. says:

    No wonder MLA’s like toprohibit watchdogs!

  13. Anonymous says:

    I think that if, as a politician, you are not able to give "perks" to the voters at election time.  Then you should not be able to give them to yourself after you are elected.  Isn’t that fair?

    No more 10 foot fences around your house.  Meaningless trips around the world. Upgraded pavement on you street only.  Stuff like that.

    Do you think they will vote that in.  Not a chance!!!!!!!

    The gifts they give are the cost of the much more valuble gifts they take later.

    That is how it works here.  Ask Mac.  He knows.

    • Anonymous says:

      If you people haven’t by now figured out why Mac built that wall, then I just don’t know what else needs to be shoved in your face.
      Don’t you realize that he had it built knowing what was getting ready to come?
      Don’t you realize that is why he is taking his pension early?

      I hope I’m wrong.

  14. Kung Fu Iguana says:

    But there a special circumstances in Cayman, especially West Bay.  People expect white good in the dark of night.  This furrener does not understand the culture and heritage of this type of behaviour.

  15. JTB says:

    I’m sure nothing like that would ever happen in Cayman …. April Fool!

  16. Anonymous says:

    What does this mean? That there will be no more appliances, driveways, water tanks, junkets for supporters, water tanks, parking lots? What is life coming to?

  17. Anonymous says:

    If a bribe to a voter is a sweetener, is that why certain politicians call certain people “sweetee”?

  18. Anonymous says:

    Voters, everybody know that to buy a vote with a sewing machine is plain wrong. Never once did Mr. Low mention frigerators or dryways and that proves there are no corrupt politiciansin these Cayman Islands. Ya hear dat.

  19. Tara says:

    How utterly appalling – I can’t imagine having to live in a place like that where corruption is so blatant and rife?  Sewing machines?…….I’m sure I’ve heard of somewhere that gives washing machines but never sewing machines!


Election handouts are bribes says watchdog

| 01/04/2011 | 0 Comments

Category: World News

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