KUALA LUMPUR – Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar and the Minister of Youth and Sports Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican urged the Election Commission (EC) to implement Undi 18 immediately.
The two leaders will also raise the issue in the Cabinet Meeting soon.
According to Khairy Jamaluddin, EC’s statement on the implementation of Undi 18 and automatic registration can only be done after 1 September next year is truly disappointing, unacceptable and contradicting.
He said, on 7 June last year, the EC Chairman announced that all preparation, including the amendment of law, election regulation, system preparation and infrastructure will be resolved latest by July this year.
Therefore, Khairy Jamaluddin said that the announcement by EC yesterday would see a delay of more than one year compared to the targeted roll out earlier.
He further said that the amendment of the Federatl Constitution which paved way for Undi 18 and the automatic registration had garnered the support of all Members of Parliament and the Senate in July 2010.
“A reminder, EC’s statement last year was only a repetition to the statement issued by the former Minister at Prime Minister’s Department, the late Datuk V.K. Liew in October 2019, who fixed the similar target on July 2021 to roll out the implementation of Undi 18 and automatic registration,” he said in a statement.
He emphasized that the excuse of Movement Control Order (MCO) which affected EC’s original plan and preparation is also unacceptable as the MCO has been implemented since more than a year ago.
Furthermore, the Minister at Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) also said in the Dewan Rakyat, November last year, that the target roll out of Undi 18 and automatic registration remains in July 2021.
“In less than five months, after the answer was given in the Dewan Rakyat, EC announced the delay of the implementation to more than a year, on September 2022, compared to the initial July 2021,” he said.
He said, EC’s statement on the workflow which requires the joint-management with political parties and non-government organisations (NGOs) also raised questions.
EC, according to him, should provide further explanation on the joint-mangement as the process is no longer being raised after Undi 18 has been approved at the highest law making process in the country, which is, the Parliament of Malaysia.
The reduction of voting age from 21 years-old to 18 years-old and automatic registration are not merely the wish of the previous government.
According to Khairy, it has obtained the approval of all political parties through the Members of Parliament who had amendment of the Federal Constitution that required 2/3 of the majority support. –MalaysiaGazette