Redelineation exercise begins with study

THE redelineation of electoral boundaries has already begun in Sarawak, says Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Institutional Reforms) Ramkarpal Singh.

He said the exercise would be carried out in Sabah in 2025 and peninsula states in 2026.

“The Election Commission (EC) will conduct a study over a period of two years.

“Following this, a report on the findings will be presented to the Prime Minister,” the Deputy Minister added.

Ramkarpal said many factors would be taken into account during the study. This includes the disparity in the distribution of voters between parliamentary seats.

“For example, there are about 300,000 voters in Bangi constituency, compared with Putrajaya which has between 30,000 to 40,000 eligible voters.

“All these will be taken into consideration by the EC during the study,” he told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

He was responding to V. Ganabatirau (PH-Klang) who asked about the need for a redelineation.

Ganabatirau said there are some constituencies with 300,000 voters and others that have more than 250,000 voters.

“There are also constituencies with fewer than 50,000 voters. I hope the government can conduct a redelineation exercise to ensure democracy is maintained,” Ganabatirau said.

Redelineation is a constitutional process in delimiting electoral boundaries to ensure electors (voters during elections) receive fair representation of their voting preferences.

The last redelineation was conducted in 2017 before the 14th General Election (GE14) in 2018.

Earlier, Ramkarpal said the lower voter turnout percentage in the 15th General Election (GE15) was due to the expansion of the electoral rolls through automatic voter registration for those aged 18 and above.

GE15 recorded a 74.7% voter turnout while GE14 recorded an 82.3% voter turnout. GE13 in 2013 had an 84.8% voter turnout.

“Despite this, EC records show the number of eligible voters who cast their votes was actually higher than those recorded in previous general elections,” he said to a question by Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim (PN-Arau).

Shahidan had asked on the declining trend in voter turnout from GE13 to GE15.

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