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EC to introduce invisible ink in Kuala Besut by-election

PUTRAJAYA — The Election Commission today announced that the July 24 Kuala Besut by-election will utilise a high-technology invisible ink to ensure a clean and fair voting process.

FAIR & TRANSPARENT: The new invisible ink to be used in Kuala Besut

FAIR & TRANSPARENT: The new invisible ink to be used in Kuala Besut

EC Chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Yusof said the decision was made based on the  post-mortem on the use of the indelible ink in the 13th General Election, which was heavily criticised by several parties for its non-permanency, casting doubt on the electoral integrity. Stressing that the new ink, made from high-grade, permanent invisible pigments of natural origins, would leave no room for doubt, he said that it was chosen to ‘silence the critics’.

“The recently-concluded election was the first time we used indelible ink and admittedly, there were some weaknesses,” said Aziz. “Among them were the ink was easy to be removed, slow to dry and caused difficulties to voters since it could  stain the ballot papers.

“However, we’ve learned from these weaknesses and have taken the necessary steps to ensure this by-election process is air-tight. Unlike the indelible ink used in GE13, the invisible ink we are using in Kuala Besut can never be washed off, no matter how hard you try,” said Aziz confidently.

With an assistant demonstrating the effectiveness and ultra-permanent properties of the ink, Aziz said that the invisibility of the liquid would make it virtually impossible for would-be fraudsters to do their dirty deed.

UNWASHABLE: Aziz's assistant showing her index finger, still clearly marked by the invisible ink

UNWASHABLE: Aziz’s assistant showing her index finger, still clearly marked by the invisible ink

“While in May, those who may have thought about voting twice found it possible to wash off the coloured ink from their fingers, this time, since they won’t be able to see the ‘before-and-after’ effect of any attempted washing, they would never be able to know if they’ve really managed to remove the ink successfully!” declared Aziz, showing his assistant’s clean, untainted index finger to reporters after laboriously scrubbing it with 8 different kinds of soap, cleansers, solvents and lotions. “I ask you now — can you see any difference on this finger from the time it got painted just now?”

Aziz assured the public that the invisible ink, designed to last for at least a week, is halal and completely safe.

“Don’t worry, the ink is both JAKIM and SIRIM certified, it is very safe and would not impede any normal activity. Also, unlike the indelible ink used before, it would not stain your ballot paper or your clothes.”

Answering a question about a statement by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim that the indelible ink used in GE13 was actually only food colouring, Aziz said that it was a simple misunderstanding, based on different interpretations of what ‘indelible’ means.

“Well, if you think about it, ‘indelible’ strongly alludes to food,” Aziz explained. “What does ‘deli’ mean? It’s short for ‘delicatessen‘, a place where food is served, and ‘indelible’ simply means [in] here is food [deli], and it is edi[ble]. See? Moreover, the word ‘delicious’ also has ‘deli’ in it, so technically we were right.”

Aziz said that it was crucial for EC to ensure that the process and tools are absolutely tamper-proof.

“We will always do more than what is necessary to make sure everyone is confident in the election results. In fact, in order to further strengthen the process, we have instructed our officers tasked with applying the invisible ink on each voter’s finger to paint clear water on their other 9 fingers, as a ‘placebo’ control mechanism. This way, the voter would never really know which finger had been painted with the actual invisible ink, and would not be able to wash it off,” he said.

“This move will prove to everyone that we are clear and transparent, like the invisible ink.”

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KL folk miss bad KL air

LUBUK MERBAU, KEDAH — It was another dreadful day for Mohd Khalis Bakar, 31, as he woke up at his parents’ old wooden house by the lush paddy fields, where coconut trees that reach into the sky sway in the northern winds. The moment he took in his first breath of fresh air for the day, his heart sank and his lungs constricted painfully.

HELL FOR KL-FOLK: Blue skies, clean and crisp air

Mohd Khalis, like many other KLites back for the Hari Raya Aidilfitri balik kampung, is struggling to get used to the clean, fresh air, found aplenty in the rural areas.

“I thought I was going to die,” complained the father-of-three. “It’s hard on my lungs, really. The air here has way too much oxygen levels, it’s suffocating. My body is finding it difficult to cope with the cool, pure and absolutely clean air. It’s horrible,”  he added, stroking his chest as he wheezed softly.

“Don’t get me wrong,” he added, whispering, either to prevent his old parents from hearing, or simply out of breath. “I do love my kampung, and I do enjoy bringing my wife and kids back to see their relatives for Hari Raya, to keep our ties of silaturrahim tight and all.

“However, while my heart enjoys these balik kampung trips, my lungs miss the pollutant-ridden, smog-filled excuse of breathable air of KL. I can’ take this!”

His view is shared by his wife of five years, Nina, who hails from Klang.

“The first time Abang Khalis brought me back to his parents’ kampung, I felt like jumping out of the moving car,” she said, frowning. “At first, when the fresh, clean air entered the air-conditioning system of the car, I thought there was something wrong with the system. I asked him if there could be some foreign de-contaminant entering the car air-con inlet or something. But when we stopped to check, and I breathed in the outside air, I felt this sharp, cold sting piercing every inch of my lungs, as if there were tiny knives stabbing me. I was shocked. I’m from Klang, where ‘blue skies’ meant a ‘blue-ish tint of grey’, not this ghastly and obscenely actual blue sky. My body was momentarily paralysed by this purity.”

Mohd Khalis interjected, “Yeah, she almost didn’t want to marry me!”

The couple admitted that over the years, they have grown somewhat accustomed to the near-zero pollution air.

“We had to train our bodies, back in KL, to prepare for our balik kampung trips,” said Mohd Khalis. “I cut down on my smoking, and occasionally went for jogs in the forest reserves in the outskirts of Ampang.”

“But we’re still struggling, though,” said Nina. “I mean, we really, really miss the bad air our bodies are used to. We miss all the toxic and highly concentrated levels of carbon monoxide, sulphur and the nauseous mix of other debilitating gasses found in KL air. It’s been four days in the village, and our kids are still suffering. They’ve lost appetite, energy and are moody all the time.”

Mohd Khalis added, “We do find respite once in a while, even here in Lubuk Merbau. My dad’s old tractor still runs, and when my folks aren’t around, I take my wife and kids to inhale the diesel smoke. It’s not the real deal, but it’s close. And we do huddle behind the outhouse at night, smoking and enjoying the beautiful mixture of toilet scents and tobacco smoke. Simply divine!”

Mohd Khalis said that they’re really looking forward to going back to the city in two days’ time.

“The first place we’ll go to get our bodies back in shape is the Puduraya bus terminal. We’re going to camp out there, immersing ourselves in the crud-filled, tar-laden fumes. Whoa, that place is the centre of good ol’ bad air. We can’t wait!”

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Aedes declared official national bird

KUALA LUMPUR — In a bid to raise awareness of the dangers of dengue fever, Malaysia’s Ministry of Health has announced that it has entered into a collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism to make the Aedes mosquito the country’s official bird.

Aedes,  a genus of mosquito typically identified by black and white stripe markings on their body and legs, was originally found in tropical and subtropical zones,  but has spread by human activity to all continents excluding Antarctica. Several of the species transmit important human diseases and one species, Aedes albopictus,  is the most invasive mosquito in the world, spreading yellow fever and the dreaded dengue. In Malaysia, the disease is so rampant that it is not uncommon to read about fatal cases every other week.

“We figured, people weren’t taking dengue fever seriously enough,” said Minister of Health Datuk Seri Dr Liow Tiong Lai at the announcement ceremony in Putrajaya, attended by Minister of Tourism, Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen. “I mean, we’re talking about anywhere between 700 to 800 dengue cases being reported every single week. Obviously, despite all the anti-dengue and anti-Aedes campaigns that we’ve run all these years, people aren’t taking notice, let alone taking it seriously. So one day, while I was bitching about this to my colleague Dr Ng here, a lightbulb lit.”

 

BEAUTIFUL BEAST: Dr Liow (left) and Dr Ng giving their thumbs up to the collaboration

“It was a momentous occasion,” said Dr Ng, excitedly. “There he was, getting all worked up about how to get the message across to
the thick-headed Malaysians out there about how deadly the Aedes mosquito is, and coincidentally I was in the middle of trying to figure out which bird I’d pick to be the national bird. We were like, ‘Eureka!’

“Think about it,” she added. “The tourism ministry was searching a bird species that is indigenous to our land, one that is both unique, beautiful and exudes all the quality we can be proud of. The Aedes has it all!”

Gesturing toward a large scale replica of the killer mosquito, Dr Ng said, “Look at these aethetically-pleasing stripes on the limbs, thorax and abdomen. They’re absolutely gorgeous! And to think that the Aedes is extremely resistant to whatever poison people spray, we’ll never have to worry about our national bird ever going extinct!”

Dr Liow added, “It is hoped that when we declare the Aedes mosquito as a national bird, effectively raising this beautiful creature’s status as a national icon, Malaysians in general will open their eyes to the dangers of having them around, hence would do the necessary to rid themselves of this scourge.” 

Dr Liow then announced that the two ministries have entered into an MOU to share their budget, to produce a two-in-one advertising awareness campaign over the next year, totalling about RM12.75 million.

“We’d be telling people to take notice of this national bird, to appreciate its beauty and tenacity, and then, to kill it!” said Dr Liow, stomping his right fist onto his left palm, like how the Shieldtox muscular guy does it in the ads, to the laughter of the Press attending the event.

Dr Ng added, “We’ll also be launching a nationwide roadshow to educate the public about Aedes and dengue, in addition to special edition stamps, website, print ads, billboards and TV commercials. We’ll have story-telling contests, concerts by Faizal Tahir, Reshmonu and Suki, who will be singing about the positive qualities of the Aedes mosquito, and the virtues of destroying the buzzing beasts. Hopefully, these efforts will draw attention of Malaysians to them.

“The talented dancers at Tourism ministry have also created a new dance, sort of a variation of the poco-poco 1Malaysia dance, the only difference being the dancers would be in black-and-white striped body suits with wings.”

“Not to forget those cute mosquito bottoms!” added Dr Liow, laughing.

NOTE: Seeing how gullible some folk can be, I’ve decided to add this little disclaimer at the end of every article after this: THIS IS A JOKE. A PARODY. IT IS UNTRUE. DO NOT BELIEVE THIS PIECE OF GARBAGE AS ACTUAL NEWS.

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