Press Statement By Michael Kong:
We are now approaching the final month of year 2021. On 03.09.2021, the High Court in Kuching decided the Election Commission (“EC”) has up till 31.12.2021 to implement the lowering of the voting age from 21 to 18 years old.
It has been more than 2 months since the decision by the High Court. By 03.12.2021, it will be 3 months since the decision. With the Sarawak state elections only being held on 18.12.2021, there is no reason for the EC to be unable to be fully ready to implement the changes by then.
This deliberate delay of approximately 2 weeks will in essence be denying young voters from 18 to 20 years of age the right to vote. This is robbing them of another 5 years before they can participate in the next state elections.
The EC should bear in mind that the decision by Judicial Commissioner Alexander Siew How Wai does not mean that the EC must only implement the lowering of age on 31.12.2021. Instead, the EC should and ought to be ready to implement the lowering of voting age without dragging its feet.
Michael Kong Feng Nian
Special Assistant to YB Chong Chieng Jen