Thursday, February 22, 2018

Advance voting

In TMI's Improve postal voting system or abolish it, the president of the National Patriots Association (Patriot). Brig-Gen (rtd) Mohd Arshad Raji, in a statement today, said the group supported the call by Bersih 2.0 for the EC to either fine-tune the postal voting system or do away with it entirely.

He explained: "Even for the military and police, which form the largest groups eligible for postal voting, there is no need for postal voting at all.'

"Unlike in 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 at their respective bases.”

He said the categories of eligible postal voters should not have been expanded, adding that a proper roster for civil servants on duty was all it took to allow them time off on election day to cast their votes.

Among groups eligible for postal voting are election staff, police and army personnel, members of the media, members of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, Prisons Department and Fire and Rescue Department, staff of government hospitals and clinics, police volunteers, and Civil Defence Force, Immigration Department and National Disaster Management Agency personnel, as well as National Registration Department staff stationed at urban transformation centres.

Brig Gen Arshad also said that postal voting should be limited to those who are away on national duty and unable to return to base within a day, such as naval patrol and maritime forces.

I fully agree with him and can suggest/propose a method used in Australia+ which can possibly remove the need for postal voting altogether (unless we are at war or in emergency mode).

* note that Australia still has postal voting because its troops are all over the world. It's very well-known, as often stated by Aussie political analysts and observers, that Australian military postal votes generally favour the conservative side of politics, and not because one visitor to my blog faked news that the soldiers who vote 'opposition' would be adversely held to account by their commanding officers, which is a gross insult to the military officers' integrity 

That method is "advance voting" which can and will be subjected to EXACTLY the same rigorous scrutiny as for Voting Day itself by all participating political parties.

"Advance voting" could be scheduled for certain locations, preferably where military cantonments lie, and on specific days (eg. a week ahead or two weeks ahead for two days each occasion, etc) so that the participating political parties can organise their scrutineers.

The rule for "advance voting" shall be that if anyone misses it, he or she shall have to vote, if desired, on the actual Voting Day, and that there shall be NO postal voting for that person or persons. 

This way, we can f**k the postal voting system, though as mentioned, when we are on emergency operations or at war, the postal system has to be in place so as not to disenfranchise the military personnel.

To avoid EC sakti-ness and Malaysian-style "kow-tim-ness" (Indonesian 'bisa diatur'), the criteria for declaring Malaysia is on emergency operations or at war shall be clearly spelt out by parliament.

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