Hornbill Unleashed

February 27, 2011

EC auto voter registration remark draws fire

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 11:59 PM
Tags: , , ,

Stephen Tiong

PKR Central Wanita vice-president Voon Shiak Nie ( Right ) has taken the cudgel to Election Commission (EC) deputy chairman Wan Ahmad Wan Omar for belittling calls for automatic voter registration to boost the number of voters in the country.

He was reported to have remarked, “Automatic voter registration would mean little if people did not vote. If most people can’t be bothered to vote, then voter turnout would be lower during election time, even if they were automatic voters.”

He also stated that, “Furthermore, what is the point of putting them on the electoral roll if they don’t bother to vote?”

Voon questioned Wan Ahmad’s certainty about the 4.1 million unregistered voters being not bothered about their right.

“And is that why they do not register themselves, or is it the inconveniences of registration due to distance and time and lack of information that resulted in this alarming number of people who still cannot manage to register themselves?” she asked.

kuala terengganu parliament by election spr ec announcement  051208 wan ahmad wan omar

She said it was very irresponsible of Wan Ahmad to assume that people do not bother to vote.

“If the country is serious about free and fair elections and the principles of democracy, then every citizen should be accorded a chance to become a voter automatically once they reach the age of 21,” she added.

Proof of interest at ground level

Voon said the PKR Stampin branch, of which she is wanita head, has been moving around different parts of town every week to help with voter registration.

She added that over the last few weeks, the branch has found over 500 people wanting to register themselves with the commission.

She said the branch head of Growing Emerging Leaders (GEL) Jasmine Ng has said that many people admitted that they have never voted before because they were not sure where to register as voters.

“These people never said that they are not bothered about voting,” said Voon, adding, “This is absolutely not the feedback that we gathered from the ground.”

She said if implemented, she expects many of the 4.1 million unregistered voters to exercise their right during elections.

polling day 080308 bn pondok panas puteri umno“The question whether the people are bothered to vote or not is not genuine justification for brushing aside calls for automatic registration by civil societies and political parties,” she said.

“The unintelligent explanation by Wan Ahmad instead will lead to a big section of citizens persistently being kept away from voting and can be deemed as a form of voter suppression.”

Voon said the problem of low low voter registration among Sarawakians has not been solved in the last 50 years.

“We wish to ask the commission why the problem remains unsolved and whether it is intended to keep those Malaysians from exercising their rights through the ballot box.”

“Is that why the commission does not support the election watch group, Malaysians For Fair and Free Elections (Mafrel), to monitor the upcoming Sarawak state elections?” she asked.

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3 Comments »

  1. aiya, dont waste time.

    typical UMNO response lah. ada tuak kah, EC?

    Comment by mmc — February 28, 2011 @ 11:55 PM | Reply

  2. How about those 1 million Malaysian legit voters residing outside of Malaysia . Why can,t we vote!!!!… We are still Malaysian…. true and blue.

    Comment by sam — February 28, 2011 @ 4:58 AM | Reply

  3. Election Commission (EC) deputy chairman might be afraid of the new but young voters who are more informed through internet of the truth: corrupted BN politicians and thus these new voters may votes against BN.

    Comment by lano — February 28, 2011 @ 3:52 AM | Reply


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