18 March, 2010


I refer to the statement today in Parliament today by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Dato Seri Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz, who rejected the proposal for automatic voters registration on the basis that all Malaysians cannot be forced to vote.

With due respect to our Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, the proposal for automatic voters registration would not force any Malaysians to vote.

There is no sensible requirement to force all Malaysians to vote under such automatic voters registration system. Even the current manual voters registration system does not force those who had registered as voters to vote.

Instead, the automatic voters registration system is an ideal system that would give all Malaysian an OPTION TO VOTE.

On the contrary, the current system only restricts the voters to only those who had registered with the Election Commission.

It would be unfortunate that a large number of Malaysians would be deprieved of their voting rights under the current manual registration system. As was previously announced by the Election Commission, there are some 28% or 4.39 million Malaysians over the age of 21 years old who have yet to register as voters as of end of last year.

The current manual voters registration system is also a costly exercise by the Election Commission. It is a waste of tax payers’ money.

As in my previous proposal to the government, I would hope that the government would reconsider allowing “automatic registration for Malaysians who attain 21 years old” and the default constituency should be based on the last known address given by the National Registration Department unless it is updated by the voters within one (1) year before the election date.

Democracy should be practiced from the voice of all Malaysians and not only those who had registered with Election Commission.