Malaysia to look at 'one person, one vote' proposal

Malaysia to look at 'one person, one vote' proposal

KUALA LUMPUR - The government will have a closer look at a proposal to adopt a "one-person, one vote" model based on racial composition for future polls, said Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim.

Shahidan, who is in charge of parliamentary affairs, said he would recommend this as part of the pending redelineation exercise by the Elec­tion Commission (EC).

While agreeing with Anthony Loke (DAP-Seremban) on the one per­son, one vote concept, Shahidan said it would be better if done based on race.

"I will put forward the model of 'one person, one vote'."

"The Chinese are the minority but have one of the largest number of votes. If it is based on race, it would mean that they will have better representation," he said when answering a question raised by Datuk Anuar Shamsul Nasarah.

Later, Shahi­dan explained that the number of seats in the Dewan Rakyat should be based on the population percentage of the race.

"The nation's population is made up of 23 per cent of Chinese, therefore they should have 23 seats as opposed to the 40 seats they have now. The same should apply to the 7 per cent of Indians, 67 per cent of Malays and 1 per cent of others," he said.

Hatta Ramli (Kuala Krai-Pas) said Shahidan failed to understand the ques­tion posed by Anuar and Shahi­dan gave an unreasonable response.

"What we mean by 'one man, one vote' is that the legislature should allocate seats based on population.

"This way there is a balance where the voting power of each voter will be as equal as possible to that of any other voter," he said.

Tian Chua (Batu-PKR) said Shahi­dan's answer and understanding deviated from the original intention.

"We would like the Prime Minister to clarify Shahidan's response," he said, adding that he hoped it did not represent the Government's view.

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