One of the greatest things about this country is that every few years (no more than 5 to be exact), the power returns to the hands of its citizens. To people like you and me.
Yes, it is the election. A process by which the general population chooses individuals to hold public office – and form government. In the case our country, any citizen of Malaysia who is over 21 years old are elegible to vote.
It is speculated in many online publications as well as the traditional media that election could be just around the corner. For those who are elegible to vote (and especially those who never voted), here are some of the things you should know:
- SPR, or Suruhanjaya Pilihan Raya (Election Comission of Malaysia), is the body responsible that regulates and conduct electionsin Malaysia
- You need to be over 21 and register with SPR to be eligible to vote
- You can register at SPR offices, POS offices with computer, and even Malaysian Embassies at other countries. (refer to SPR page here)
- Registration is free, and you only need to bring your IC
- It takes up to 2-5 months after you register to be eligible to vote. The registration process is divided into four period, for period Oct-Dec, you will be able to vote if the election falls after next February. (refer to SPR page here).
voter registration waiting period in Malaysia – for Oct to Dec registrations
- If you have already registered, click on Semakan Daftar Pemilih to check your registration status, a box like below will appear, key in your IC number to proceed.
find out your registration status
- To change your voting address, you need to be present with your IC or JPN paper to SPR office, counters, or POS offices with computers (the same locations for registration).
- SPR also provide services
Participation in elections is not only a privilege, it is a right that every eligible citizen should exercise. Remember, if you did not vote, you will have no right to criticize the the leaders you did not participate in choosing.
banners of BN & PAS at Kampung Baru, 2008
While elections might not happen anytime soon (maybe not even next year), there is no harm in registering yourself with SPR early. All it takes is a few minutes of your time.
So exercise your right as a citizen of Malaysia, and register to vote, then when election comes, choose the best candidate whom you think will make Malaysia the best country that she can be.
For more information, head to http://www.spr.gov.my.