Sunday, 14 April 2013

What About The Election?

After 5 years and 2 months, a decent proportion of Malaysians are anxious to return to the ballot boxes with greater urgency than even the previous elections.

The fever is international. Malaysians from every corner of the world are either excitedly following the progress of the upcoming days or even flying the thousand miles to come home and vote.

This time, an international audience is also watching. Not content with the ruling coalition's morality (or lack thereof), Bersih has beseeched Australia to get involved.

“Australia can and must play a critical role in ensuring a close UN member, Commonwealth friend and long-standing ally like Malaysia heeds its democratic obligations and respects the rights of its citizens without resorting to widespread violence, intimidation and electoral fraud,” said Global Bersih.

Malaysians have had enough. In the last 5 years, the crime rate has increased drastically. So has national debt. Meanwhile, the quality of life has steadily declined.

When things were going well, people turned a blind eye to corruption, racist practices, cronyism and nepotism. But life has stepped up the pace (all over the world, not just in Malaysia) and people are just not willing to accept old practices anymore.

So what are Malaysians voting for? Is it a certain political party? Or a particular personality? Or is there more to it?

Perhaps virtue may have a hand in it?

Like maybe, Empathy? Accountability. Transparency. Integrity. Stewardship.

Do those still matter?

Fly Home To Vote!

A while back, I posted about Malaysians working abroad who will be returning home to vote.

Interestingly, the airlines appear to be cooperating with those returning around the 5th of May.


Airlines are hoping to cash in on the huge interest in Malaysia’s upcoming May 5 elections by offering discounts and promotions to entice Malaysians living abroad to come home to vote.

“Fly Home to Vote” kicked it off, with cheap tickets offered by discount carrier AirAsia Bhd.

There are over one million Malaysians living and working outside Malaysia, according to MyOverseasVote, a group set up to campaign for the right of Malaysians abroad to vote. Roughly 40% work in Singapore and 20% in other Asian countries, the group said.

“We’re urging people to come back to vote and be sure that their votes will go to their preferred party because we’re gravely concerned about the possibility of fraud,” Bersih co-chairman Ambiga Sreenevasan told The Wall Street Journal.

National flag carrier Malaysian Airlines System Bhd isn’t offering any special fares, but it will allow Malaysians to change their flight schedules to around the election period free of charge, a company spokesperson said.

The elections were exciting the last time round. This time it's going to be riveting.