Thursday January 10, 2013
About time young adults take elections seriously, say newly registered voters
By RUSSELL TING
KUCHING: With the general election on the horizon, many young adults are now realising the importance of making themselves heard by being a registered voter.
The Star caught up with several newly registered voters to find out what being able to vote means to them, as well as their concerns and opinions about the elections.
“I think it’s about time the younger generation take voting seriously. I registered myself as a voter to show that the citizens have the power to make a difference by voting. It isn’t so much of who wins or loses, it’s about making a change,” said 28-year-old events organiser Jess Poh.
“For example, there is a need to have transparency across all sectors. I feel that the Malaysian police force really needs to be revamped, as well as other government bodies. Voting for something that you believe in is one of the ways to generate such change,” she added.
Civil engineer Poon Tzia Lok, 26, feels the same way.
“I want to make a difference, to make a change somehow, and registering myself as a voter is one of the ways to do so,” he said.
“I feel that is our responsibility as citizens of this country to vote. As a Malaysian, we should do all we can to make our country a better place to live in.
“Voting is a form of voicing out our concerns. In my opinion, I think that we desperately need better public transportation and road infrastructure. Education is also important, because I feel that we are not placing enough importance on keeping our fresh graduates or valuable manpower in the country,” he added.
There are also others who have come to realise the need to exercise their rights through voting, such as 31-year-old journalist Antonia Chiam.
“I used to be apolitical and apathetic to things going on in the country, but joining the media industry has really opened up my eyes. I realised that I should exercise my rights as a citizen in deciding the direction of our country,” said Chiam, who will be voting for the first time this year.
“I hope to see general positive changes to our socio-political landscape. I want to see a strong two-party system in place, whereby no one group stays in power too long. There will be no room for complacency or power abuse as politicians will always have to be on their toes and serve the people well or be voted out,” she said.
There are currently 31 parliamentary seats in Sarawak, 29 of which are held by Barisan Nasional and two by the Opposition.
The current term of the Dewan Rakyat expires in April this year. There have been speculations that the polls could be held by the end of March.