October 18, 2022
PETALING JAYA – Even before the Election Commission (EC) meets on Thursday to decide on the election date, political parties are rushing to woo the voters – especially those who are living abroad and away from their home states.
The parties and several NGOs are not just urging them to return to vote, they are also organising postal votes and even getting Malaysians living abroad to bring back postal votes.
They are also providing car-pooling on polling day to ferry voters to ballot stations, complete with 4WD vehicles to ensure no hiccups are caused by floods.
There are fears that the campaign period may turn out to be a very short one due to the expected floods during the year-end transitional monsoon season.
And it’s not just the Opposition doing all this, as in the past.
Penang Barisan Nasional chairman Datuk Musa Sheikh Fadzir said groundwork has already started with the party machinery going all out to reach outside voters and help them come back.
“This will be done in various ways including through our own internal Wanita call operation centres and through social media,” he said yesterday.
PAS Youth chief Ahmad Fadhli Shaari said they are actively campaigning to encourage Malaysians abroad to get themselves registered.
He said besides using social media, the party will also identify representatives in each country to help with the campaigning.
“We will have delegations going to countries where there are many Malaysian students, such as Egypt, Australia and Indonesia. We will encourage those who are not coming back to register as postal voters,” he said.
Ahmad Fadhli said the focus would, however, be on those in the constituencies to go out and vote.
Kedah Pakatan Harapan chairman Datuk Johari Abdul said the Ayuh Malaysia campaign spearheaded by PKR deputy president Rafizi Ramli is a recent campaign organised by the party to encourage voter participation.
He said Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim too has been making his rounds, meeting voters and sending the message that Malaysians need to pick the right candidates to take the nation forward.
Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (Muda) media liaison head Leben Siddarth said his party is reaching out to voters on all social media platforms.
“Currently, we are promoting more on the Undi18, postal votes and the GOTV (get out the vote) app.
“More rigorous campaigns will start once the EC announces the key dates for GE15,” he said, adding that efforts are being made to provide bus services to encourage voters to return.
The EC will announce nomination and polling dates on Thursday.