PETALING JAYA: The government’s fear of a backlash from youth voters facing high unemployment and low wages could be the reason why it is delaying the implementation of Undi18, says DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.
The former finance minister said the government’s failure to create enough jobs must have “demotivated” it from proceeding with plans to implement the new voting age of 18 by July.
Lim said he expected the next general election (GE15) to take place early next year.
This was based on the Perikatan Nasional (PN) administration’s decision to allow the Election Commission to postpone Undi18 to after September 2022.
“By that time, millions of those aged between 18 and 20 will not be able to vote. Thus, they will be unable to apply pressure on the government to seriously commit to creating more jobs,” he said in a statement.
He aid human resources minister M Saravanan and economy minister Mustapa Mohamed had “refused to uphold the minimum monthly wage of RM1,200”, although it was illegal and went against workers’ rights.
Lim also reiterated his call for the government to focus on borrowing more money from the domestic debt market to spend more on saving and creating jobs.
Earlier this month, the Statistics Department reported that the country’s unemployment rate for youths, aged 15 to 24, had increased by 0.4% to 13.9% in February, involving 347,600 people.
This is an increase of 52,400 compared to 295,300 in January this year.