Varsity students admit not ready to vote at 18
0 month ago, 12-Oct-2019
KOTA KINABALU: Some of the university students of Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) voiced that they were not ready to become voters at 18 years old.
They were replying to Election Commission chairman, Datuk Azhar Harun, who asked them if there were prepared to be voters.
Azhar was there to give a talk on voting and democracy in his paper entitled ‘Towards more democratic Malaysia: Challenges and issues in electoral reform’ during the institution’s Symposium on Electoral Reform 2019.
He then told them that he likened voting like an examination, whereby one is never ready.
And that like examinations, it is imperative that they should prepare for it.
“Take five minutes each day to prepare,” he said, citing that eventually, they would have the knowledge they need and be prepared to face the imminent.
He also spoke on the effort by the commission to get youths prepared for voting.
He said that the commission enlisted associate trainer from among youths instead of non-government organizations (NGOs).
One of the reasons he gave was that young people understood each other whereas NGOs were often run by people who were no longer young.
At the same time, he also spoke of other challenges facing the commission – voters with addresses that were not updated or no longer existed.
He said that the commission used the information provided by the National Registration Department (NRD) and that it was problematic when voters did not update their address with the NRD.
“Sometimes the address stated no longer exists – this gives rise to issues like fake voters but these are legit voters with an address that has not been updated,” he informed.
He urged voters to update their particulars with the NRD because it would be problematic when the automatic registration of voters was implemented.
The purpose of implementing the automatic registration of voters, he said, was to help folks, particularly those in the rural areas to register.
Presently, automatic registration is not enforced yet, he said.
Azhar also mentioned the High Court decision to declare the Kimanis parliamentary seat election results null and void in August.
He said that if the Federal Court decided to affirm the decision made, there would be a by-election for the Kimanis parliamentary seat.