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PBB vice president Datuk Karim Rahman Hamzah said he supports 18 year olds becoming voters. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
PBB vice president Datuk Karim Rahman Hamzah said he supports 18 year olds becoming voters. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUCHING, Aug 24 — Parti Pesaka Bumiputra Bersatu (PBB) vice president Datuk Karim Rahman Hamzah said the Election Commission (EC) needs to refine the registration criteria before 18 year olds can vote in the upcoming Sarawak state election.

“I still support 18 year olds becoming voters because we have approved the law in Parliament and this we must accept,” Karim, who is also the state Youth and Sports Minister and Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister, told reporters.

“If you look at a number of countries, 18 years is the age of majority, even in Malaysia. In Malaysia, if you want to own a landed property or driving licence, you need to be 18 years old.

“If they have to be registered, get the registration in order as long as it is not automatic for them to vote,” he said at a press conference on the Sarawak-Malaysia My Second Home (S-MM2H) programme here.

“But whether it can be implemented or enforceable now may take time because the method to vote in Malaysia is that every voter must register themselves.

“We are not like Indonesia or India where you only need to bring your identity card (to the polling station) to vote.”

The term of the current Sarawak State Assembly expired on June 6 this year.

The nation-wide Proclamation of Emergency early this year, which ended on August 1, suspended the sitting of the Sarawak State Assembly and prevented a state election from being held.

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