KUALA LUMPUR: The Election Commission (EC) should have a backup plan to avoid voters being denied their right to cast their ballots if mistakenly placed under home surveillance for Covid-19 due to a glitch in the MySejahtera app.

The suggestion was made by Alice Lau (PH-Lanang) who voiced concern that a similar glitch, to the one that occurred recently, could repeat during the Melaka and Sarawak state polls.

“I am very worried that the same will happen on balloting day for the state polls in Melaka and Sarawak.

“If it does, it will give rise to unfairness in the balloting process as voters who are affected will not be able to leave their homes or enter balloting centres to cast their votes.

“The EC should have alternative plans to overcome the problems should it happen again on balloting day,” Lau said when debating Budget 2022 in Dewan Rakyat on Monday (Nov 8).

She also questioned who will be responsible for the mistake which resulted in losses to the affected MySejahtera app users.

She said that mistake would have resulted in some being denied entry into hotels during holidays or boarding flights to further their studies.

Voters in Melaka will be casting their ballots on Nov 20 while the Sarawak state polls are to be held before Jan 2 next year.

The issue was highlighted by several netizens shortly after midnight on Sunday (Nov 7) after being issued Covid-19 Home Surveillance Order (HSO) and Person Under Surveillance (PUS) statuses on their mobile phones via the MySejahtera app.

Those affected expressed shock as they had not left home or did not come into close contact with Covid-19 positive people in the past 14-days.

The Health Ministry apologised later the same day, saying that it has fixed the root cause which allowed the glitch to happen.

Lau also proposed that the Health Ministry set up a 24-hour hotline to immediately resolve problems faced by those who had been erroneously placed under HSO and PUS.

“Although MySejahtera has rectified the problem and retracted the HOS and PUS notices, those affected complained that their Covid-19 digital certification is now missing,” she said.

She claimed that although there was a “helpdesk” section under the MySejahtera app, there was a long delay in getting a response.

“There are those who completed their vaccination doses but did not get their digital certification although they raised the matter with the helpdesk several times,” she said.

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