An Exemption for Students to Skip Classes to Vote in the 14th General Election
This petition made change with 186 supporters!
As the 14th Malaysian General Election draws near with the dissolution of the Parliament, preparations were being made by all political parties hoping to win the majority support by the people to form a democratic government of Malaysia.
Democracy we know today encompassed many elements, which include elections, human suffrage, fundamental rights and liberties, the rule of law, and government that is solely of the people, by the people and for the people.
Many of the ordinary people could only see election as the sole component of any democracy settings and the rest of the elements are just complementary or even dispensable.
Today, we have seen movements that ‘discourage’ people to vote as voting for the opposition party or the ruling party is merely the lesser of two evils. The so-called most essential and sole component is now being undermined. To aggravate the attacks, many of the young adults shy away from politics and rather not know too much or participate in our political ecology. Many will say, “My vote won’t make much of a difference” without realizing that there are over a hundred thousands of eligible voters with the exact same thought.
The current generations we have today are supposed to lead us. If this mind-set is to continue, our country might be heading to a dystopian future where there will be no more elections, governments are self-appointed, massive surveillance on the people, the usage of secret police and finally the loss of freedom.
During the Cold War, people of ‘colour’ in the United States were greatly persecuted and assaulted due to their desire to vote. Many of them were required to march, sit-in, stand up, face police dogs and until Martin Luther King Jr. great speech on all men are created equal. In Cambodia, the Khmer Rouge regime has forgo all elections or never to begin with leading to an authoritarian and brutal state through execution and depopulating its own people.
If we were to choose not to exercise this freedom to vote, we are simply just voting for a darker age, an age similar and seen during the Cold War. Past sacrifices made by the people to ensure elections to be held will be in vain.
Therefore, this petition is created in hoping that the relevant authorities could encourage students from all local universities and colleges to go back to their respective constituency to vote. I urge the authorities to give a grace period of 2-3 days before, during and after the election to enable students to return home and later return to their studies. (The GE falls on May 9th, Wednesday, then May 8th, 9th and May 10th shall be exempted for travelling students to attend class)
I do hope that many of us could support this petition. The fixture of the election date has took unprecedented turn by putting it on May 9th, Wednesday, middle of the week which could hinder many of us to vote. Travelling students who wanted to vote will have to face a tougher time to come back.
Let us all fulfill our simplest and most sacred social responsibility to the country and democracy by voting in the upcoming election, once every 5 years. As Franklin D. Roosevelt (32nd President of the United States) once said, “Nobody will ever deprive the people of the right to vote except the people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting”.
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