Malaysian constitution give every citizen a right to vote-no mention that they need to register to get it. Registration is at most an administrative process-not something which should hinder voting rights. But in Malaysia the long time-up to 6 months-required to register as voters has demonstrably caused many citizens to lose their voting rights. Is the registration then something `forced’ onto the citizens?
Mar 18, 10
The government has rejected the automatic voter registration system as suggested by the Election Commission as Malaysians cannot be forced to vote, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz.
Nazri told the Dewan Rakyat today that Malaysia respects freedom of choice of its citizen in reply to MP Fong Poh Kuan’s (DAP-Batu Gajah) question on whether the government had the political will to implement the system.
parliament gobind singh ban over nazri mistake 251108 04“We can’t force (people to vote) in elections although forcing people is the way of the opposition,” said Nazri, taking a swipe at the Pakatan Rakyat MPs.
“(But) I don’t like to force people. Many of such cases (of coercion) has happened to that side (opposition),” said Nazri.
He argued that the decision to vote or to abstain should be left to eligible Malaysians.
Prior to that, Nazri said that the the government would not be lowering the voting age from 21 to 18, although citizens who are 18 years and above can join political parties.
“Although there are people who say if one is mature enough to get married, he or she should be old enough to vote, this is akin to opening the Pandora’s box,” said the Padang Renggas BN MP.
Nazri said this in response to MP Md Sirat Abu (BN-Bukit Katil), who asked whether the government would set the same age limit for joining political parties and for voting in elections.