• Wartawan Nabalu News

DELAYING UNDI18 SHOWS THAT PN GOVT IS INTIMIDATED BY YOUNG VOTERS - EWON


Datuk Ewon Benedick

26 March 2021

By Wartawan Nabalu News


KOTA KINABALU: The vice president of United Kinabalu Progressive Organisation (UPKO) Datuk Ewon Benedick said the decision to delay the UNDI18 implementation to September next year shows that the Perikatan Nasional government is afraid of facing young voters in the general election (GE).


"Just admit that you are actually scared of UNDI18 ... There is no need to use the movement control order (MCO) as an excuse," he said in a statement here, Thursday.



The State Assemblyman for Kadamaian reiterated his stance in support of UNDI18 which gives young Sabahans aged 18 and above to the right to vote.


"I supported UNDI18 when I was in the Sabah State Cabinet meeting and voted in support of the amendment to the Sabah State Constitution on this matter during the assembly sitting.


"However, the Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin stated that he would hold a general election as soon as the period of 'political emergency' ended, but has now delayed the rights of 18-21 years old youths to vote," he said.


Ewon was commenting on the statement by the Election Commission (EC) which stated that UNDI18 is expected to be implemented only after September 1, 2022.



This reflects the failure of both the the electoral body and the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government led by Muhyiddin, he added.

"The excuse of MCO affecting the implementation of UNDI18 is indeed very weak. Throughout the implementation of MCO, the relevant government enforcement agencies have fined young people, including students, with compounds of up to RM10,000, as well as making last-minute inefficient announcements that have confused young people who are still in schools and higher learning institutes," he lamented.


"Actually, young people aged 18-21 have been doing many things that adults have done since a long time ago. They can set up a household, conduct business, have license, sign contracts, and participate in nation-building process.



"Besides that, they are also subject to the same national laws as those of aged 21 and above," he explained.


Ewon said that was the reason he praised former youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman for the initiative realised by the previous Pakatan Harapan government.


“That is why when Parliament approved UNDI18 and then the amendment to the Federal Constitution, it must also be brought to the Sabah State Cabinet meeting, then to the Sabah State Legislative Assembly to amend the Sabah State Constitution to give voting rights to Sabah youths who are 18 years old and above,” he said.