Did you know that 18-year-old Malaysians are old enough to:
- Start an NGO
- Start working
- Register a business
- Drive a vehicle
- Own a credit card
- Buy property
- Travel unaccompanied
- Join the military
- Get married
- File a lawsuit
But they are not old enough to vote. They are allowed the same roles and responsibilities as those who can vote, but are still denied of the right to vote.
Young adults should not be unfairly excluded from the decision-making of societies. They have a larger stake in our future and are more affected by political issues. This is why The Body Shop Malaysia has launched a nationwide campaign to petition the government for the timely implementation of lowering the voting age from 21 to 18, as passed by the Malaysian Parliament in July 2019 to amend Article 119(1)(a) of the Federal Constitution.
The petition calls upon the government to ensure that this amendment is honoured as initially promised by July 2021. It was recently announced that the implementation of the amended Act would only take effect in September next year. Hence, this will affect the eligibility of 1.2 million 18-year-olds to vote in the coming general elections.
The Body Shop’s My Vote My Right18 campaign and petition will be running for the whole month of May. Malaysians can support and sign the petition in-stores or online. They aim to submit the petition to our cabinet members in the first week of June, 2021.