The Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (BERSIH 2.0) is pleased to officially launch the Ketuanan Pengundi (KP) campaign in conjunction with International Democracy Day today. This will be our overarching campaign that will take us into the 15th General Election (GE15) and aims to refocus the national conversation on prioritizing the interest of voters above all else.
Since the last General Election in 2018, we have witnessed increased political machinations between the parties – defections by MPs right after GE14, the playing up of racial and religious sentiments by politicians over several incidents, the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government after 22 months, the collapse of six state governments thereafter, the desperate attempts of the Muhyiddin government to hold on to power through suspensions of Parliament and a declaration of a National Emergency, and finally the resignation of Muhyiddin and the appointment of Ismail Sabri as the third Prime Minister in 3 years.
In all these maneuverings by the politicians, the well-being and legitimate rights of the Rakyat were sidelined and we could only watch haplessly while the politicians jostled for power while COVID-19 spiralled out of control and millions lost their livelihood due the the endless lockdowns.
It is time for the Rakyat to reassert our supremacy in our parliamentary democracy so that our elected representatives begin to work for us. When we cast our votes at each election, we are not only doing our civic duty but along with our votes are our aspirations for a better future, where the elected government would implement better policies to help us realise our dreams, and better laws to serve and protect us.
Through researches and consultations with stakeholders, Bersih 2.0 has identified structural flaws and barriers in our political and electoral systems that weakened the rights of voters, emasculated key institutions, disproportionately empowered the Executive and marginalized the opposition.
The Ketuanan Pengundi campaign brings together these important reforms in six demands to strengthen the rights of voters and level the political playing field for all parties. The six demands are:
- DON’T SUPPRESS OUR VOTES! (Issues: Reform of EC, Undi18, Automatic Voters Registration, expansion of absentee voting to out-of-region voters)
- STOP PARTY-HOPPING! (Issues: recall election, equal Constituency Development Fund, Reform of GLC appointments)
- MAKE PARLIAMENT WORK! (Issues: Restore Parliament Service Act, more Parliamentary Special Select Committees, Amendments of Standing Orders)
- IT’S OUR RIGHT TO DISSENT! (Issues: freedom of expression, assembly & association, IPCMC
- NO DOUBLE STANDARDS! (Issues: Equality before the law, reform AGC, MACC, IRB, Reform of Key Public Officer Appointments, Independence of Judiciary)
- GIVE RATEPAYERS A VOICE! (Issues: Promote local democracy at local council, participatory budgeting, greater decentralisation)
As part of our identification with the six demands, we will be using the hand sign for the number six, to demonstrate our support for the Ketuanan Pengundi demands as well as to show solidarity with those who are mute. To sign the number six, take the thumb and touch the last finger.
Bersih 2.0 will be running a series of social media campaigns and a nationwide roadshow to create awareness and to seek the support of the public. In the coming month, we will also launch a competition to design KP facemask and tee-shirt where we will adopt the winning designs as our official merchandise designs.
We will continue to engage with political parties to convince them to commit to these reforms in their election manifestos. We are also pleased to note that several of our demands are already part of the Memorandum of Understanding for Transformation and Political Stability that was signed just two days ago. We will closely monitor their fulfillment.
For some of the campaigns, we will collaborate with civil society partners to advocate for common issues we share. We will use the Ketuanan Pengundi logo and the hashtag #KetuananPengundi and #HidupDemokrasi in our joint-advocacy.
Bersih 2.0 calls on the public to support our six demands by widely sharing our digital posters and materials, and contacting their elected representatives to support these demands. As it would take much financial resources to run the Ketuanan Pengundi campaign for the next two years, we would like to appeal to you show your support by donating to us at:
Name: Bersih & Adil Network Sdn Bhd
Bank: Maybank (PJ Old Town Branch)
Reference: Ketuanan Pengundi
It is our hope that one day we would celebrate 15th September as Hari Ketuanan Pengundi, a day before we celebrate the birth of Malaysia on the 16th, as a democracy that embraces all our diverse cultures, ethnicities and religions. Hidup Rakyat, Hidup Malaysia!
Statement issued by:
The Steering Committee of BERSIH 2.0