British Columbia

Surrey community group makes allegations of voter fraud

Wake Up Surrey has asked the RCMP to investigate allegations of voter fraud they claim could affect up to 15,000 votes in the upcoming municipal election.

Wake Up Surrey claims scheme could affect up to 15,000 votes

Wake Up Surrey is alleging voter fraud in the South Asian community in Surrey, B.C. (CBC)

A community group in Surrey, B.C., wants RCMP to investigate allegations of voter fraud that could impact the upcoming municipal election. 

Wake Up Surrey, an organization that does social outreach work with Surrey's South Asian community, sent a letter to Surrey RCMP on Friday. The group alleges that people are requesting absentee ballots and voting illegally by forging voter signatures or telling the voter who to vote for. 

Spokesperson Sukhi Sandhu said the group received numerous phone calls and inquiries over the past week from individuals saying they or someone they knew had been targeted.

"We felt it was out moral duty to inform the RCMP right away," said Sandhu. "Sadly, there is a group that is aligned with one or more campaigns that has put together a scheme to undermine our democracy in this upcoming election."

Sandhu did not say who he thinks that group is. He did say people in the South Asian community are involved.

'A shadow of doubt'

Rajesh Jayaprakash, mayoral candidate for People First Surrey, said he and his party are not involved in any wrongdoing.

Jayaprakesh said he appreciates Wake Up Surrey for coming forward, but he takes issue with Wake Up Surrey singling out the South Asian community.

"Whether the allegation is true or not, it casts a shadow of doubt and shame on the South Asian community in general," Jayaprakash said.

He said the name of the community should never have been publicized. Jayaprakesh thinks an RCMP investigation would be more effective if the suspected group had been kept a secret.

But Sandhu disagreed. 

"This is South Asian people doing this. Let's call a spade a spade," Sandhu said, reacting to People First Surrey's concern.

In a statement released Saturday, Proudly Surrey Party mayoral candidate Pauline Greaves reacted to the fraud allegations by calling for an immediate suspension of all mail-in voting in Surrey.

RCMP has yet to confirm with CBC News if they plan on investigating the allegations.