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KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — The Pakatan Harapan (PH) presidential council has condemned the Election Commission’s (EC) decision to defer lowering the voting age to 18 and making everyone an automatic voter until next year.
It said the move was unconstitutional and went against the decisions made by the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara in July 2019, while holding the EC entirely accountable for the postponement.
“The EC must take full responsibility for this deferment which is a huge failure and goes against the Federal Constitution.
“Suspension of Parliament cannot be abused as an excuse to ignore the constitution as you please. The failure to amend the act also shows that the EC is not independent, is abusing the regulatory process and shows how weak they are in their dedication to uphold democracy,” the council said in a statement.
“The Perikatan Nasional (PN) government and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin cannot avoid responsibility for this failure which is going to make a lot of young people, waiting for their chance to vote, very angry.”
The group added that it felt that Undi18 must be implemented as scheduled and the announcement should be made in Parliament by de facto law minister Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan in July 2021, as promised.
If Takiyuddin breaks his promise, then he should resign with immediate effect, the statement read.
“PH also feels that the next general elections need not be held as long as Undi18 is not implemented.
“If it does happen before Undi18 is implemented, it will deny 3.8 million youth and will become the biggest sin the PN government can commit against future generations.”
The joint statement was signed by PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.