PETALING JAYA: Umno is amending its constitution to accept members as young as 16 into the party, in tandem with the government's move to lower voting age to 18, says party Youth chief Datuk Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki.
The amendment process would be hastened, as the Supreme Council had last year given the nod to lower the age of membership eligibility from 18 to 16, he added.
"We are amending the party constitution during our special General Assembly in November," said Asyraf.
He said this when asked to comment on the Federal Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2019 to lower the voting age which was passed at the Dewan Rakyat with overwhelming majority of 211 votes on Tuesday (July 16).
Asyraf said they would also strengthen the wing's branch for teenagers that focused on programmes for youngsters aged 15 and above.
Asyraf said the move to allow teenagers as young as 18 to vote and contest in elections was "constructive" in view of the changing global landscape and demography to maximise participation of youngsters in the administration of a democratic nation.
PKR Youth chief Akmal Nasrullah Mohd Nasir said the movement will be launching "AMK Siswa" by year end as a platform to advocate youths' right to vote.
"The advocacy will also focus on youth empowerment and activities that are relevant to their interests," he said.
PAS Youth chief Khairil Nizam Khirudin said youngsters were allowed to join the party the moment they hit puberty, as accorded in the party constitution.
"Now that the minimum age to vote and contest in elections is reduced to 18, we will intensify effort to woo the youngsters of all races and religion via new media.
"We play mature and goodwill politics.
"We want to promote a new culture of politics that is palatable to all," he said.