`Fun’ candidates has been used as a bogey to raise candidate’s deposit in elections-but where is the `fun’ candidate in Sarawak’s state elections? Right to vote include also right to be voted. Everyone should have equal right to be a candidate in a democracy, while opinions and platforms may differ. May the most popular candidate win-not the candidate with the biggest pocket!
Masing wants govt to raise election deposit
by Wilfred Pilo. Posted on April 30, 2011, Saturday
KUCHING: Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president Dato Sri Dr James Jemut Masing has called on the government to raise the deposit required for candidates to stand in elections.
At present, candidates wishing to stand for election at state level need to deposit RM5,000 with the Election Commission (EC), while at parliamentary level the deposit is RM15,000.
Masing told The Borneo Post that Malaysia must seriously emulate the Singapore model, which required those contesting to put down a S$80,000 (RM193,976) deposit.
The island nation imposed the high amount to weed out nuisance candidates.
Masing, who is Land and Development Minister,
said having the same regulations in Malaysia would put a halt to candidates who just wanted to stand for fun.
On Wednesday, former Singapore premiere Lee Kuan Yew was re-elected unopposed after the opposition team filed their nomination papers 35 seconds past the deadline because they had trouble raising the S$80,000.
Lee, 87, and four other candidates of the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) were declared the only candidates after the noon deadline.
Lee has been Tanjong Pagar MP since 1955.
A total of 82 out 87 MP seats will be contested when the country goes to the polls on May 7.