'I Need Time To Think,' Says EC Chairman On Service Extension

December 13, 2007 19:19 PM
PENANG, Dec 13 (Bernama) — “Who would want this job? Constantly being abused without clear reasons. Instead, I can sleep tight and play with the grandchildren.”

This is what Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman said when asked whether he would extend his service as chairman of the Election Commission (EC). But he did say there were signs that the government would want him to continue.
“The general election is getting nearer, how could I run away? The critics would say I am a coward. I am not scared. I am also not scared if there are people wanting to stage riots but they have to face the law if they do that,” he told reporters after a briefing for election officials here Thursday.
The Dewan Rakyat this week passed the Constitution (Amendment) Bill to extend the retirement age of EC members from 65 to 66. Rashid became EC chairman in 2000 and will reach 65 at the end of this year.
He said he would need time to think if the government offered him an extension. He said he did not want to make a hasty decision. “It is not something automatic,” he said.
Rashid said he served the EC not for money or other factors. It was an obligation to the country, he said.