22nd February 2018
PATRIOT SUPPORTS CALL TO BETTER STREAMLINE OR HALT POSTAL VOTING
Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan (Patriot) supports the call by Bersih 2.0, in its media statement on 21 Feb18, to either improve on the system of postal voting or abolish it all together. In making the call, Bersih 2.0 criticized the Election Commission’s need to open up postal voting for civil servants from nine to twelve categories, arguing that the system is opened to abuse. Furthermore the date for polling is not pre-determined well in advance and that it would not be possible to know if the civil servant concerned is on duty on the actual polling day.
Patriot strongly feels the categories of civil servants to be given eligibility for postal voting should be reduced and not increased. Even for the military and the police, which form the largest groups eligible for postal voting, there is no need for postal voting at all. Unlike our time when we were fighting our nation’s enemies, when the bulk of the troops were either in the jungle or on standby for emergency deployment, we are now in peacetime and troops are stationed in their respective bases. A proper duty roster for the day could easily allow all the security forces personnel to vote on the actual polling day. Likewise, for the civilians on duty like immigration, customs, fire and rescue, prison, hospital, and including those on duty during polling day. Proper management by the officers and those in charge should enable all the civil servants under their care to exercise their democratic duty to vote on the actual polling day.
Postal voting should be strictly limited to those who are away on national duties and not possible to return to base within a day, like naval patrol and maritime.
Our southern neighbor has shown us that elections could be successfully conducted without postal voting. Surely we could do the same, otherwise even better.
Patriot would like to take this opportunity again to urge our brethren who are currently serving to exercise their democratic duty to vote without fear or favour. Voting is also your patriotic duty.
Reference article from:
BG Dato Mohamed Arshad Raji (Rtd)
President, Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan