A total of 171,023 out of 13 million eligible voters in the current electoral roll, the largest number of them in Selangor, have the 'Code 71' in their MyKad, according to the Election commission (EC) chairperson Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof.
Code 71 makes up the seventh and eighth digits in the 12-digit MyKad number. It is one of the codes used by the National Registration Department (NRD) to indicate that the MyKad holder was born overseas or is a foreigner who has obtained Malaysian nationality.
However, Abdul Aziz ( left ) said, the NRD has stopped using this code and has replaced it with country codes for the countries in which the MyKad holders were born.
Reporting on this today, Oriental Daily News also quoted Abdul Aziz as disclosing the numbers of voters with Code 71 in their MyKad in several states during a briefing in Kota Kinabalu yesterday.
Selangor tops the list with 32,458 voters, followed by Johor (27,929) and Kuala Lumpur (17,497). The number in Sabah, which has been flooded with immigrants, stands at 8,386 while the neighbouring federal territory of Labuan has 358 such voters.
Abdul Aziz explained that being the most populous state in Malaysia and with the highest rate of employment, Selangor has attracted a large number of residents from other states, hence its high number of Code 71 voters.
'Foreigners in roll to shore up support for BN'
Opposition political parties, electoral reform coalition Bersih and political researchers have been disputing the registration of such people as voters.
These foreigners, they argue, were given citizenship and voting rights to shore up support for the BN during elections.
Malaysian Electoral Roll Analysis Project (Merap) director Ong Kian Ming has found that in certain voting areas, almost all newly registered voters with Code 71 MyKad were registered by government agencies and their addresses do not have house numbers , making them untraceable on the ground.
The EC has explained that they cannot reject the registration of such voters as long as their records in the NRD are valid.
During the briefing, EC deputy chairperson Wan Ahmad Wan Omar revealed that the electoral roll updated until the third quarter of 2012 shows that there are 946,533 voters in Sabah and 24,268 in Labuan.
Of these, 9,544 are voters from the armed forces and 8,528 in police force, who are eligible for advanced voting. There are also 42 overseas voters who are postal voters. The numbers for these categories in Labuan are 1,605, 240 and four.