Record high number of candidates but record low voter turnout for this 12th Sarawak Election?

Sarawak polls (file photo).

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By Lian Cheng

KUCHING, Dec 8: Despite the record high number of candidates joining the race for the 12th Sarawak Election, the public’s attitude towards this election has turned out to be generally cold and indifferent.  

This is especially so in Kuching city where a random check on the ground showed that many have already made up their minds not to turn up to vote for various reasons. 

An elderly gentleman who only wanted to be known as Yong when met a park at Muara Tabuan was adamant and certain that he will not be voting this time around.

“No, I am not going to vote this time. All my buddies have also decided not to vote,” the 65-year-old told DayakDaily.

“Now there is an even more dangerous variant called Omicron. We are the vulnerable group. We are not going to take chances,” he added.

Account clerk Theresa Pui, 36, when approached, said she had yet to register as a voter.  Apart from her, two of her close friends were in the same situation as her where despite being eligible to vote, both have chosen not to register themselves as voters. 

Meanwhile, three of her other friends and her husband have all decided not to go and vote due to the fear of Covid-19.  

Pui also predicted that her parents-in-law would also most likely give voting a miss this time because their voting station is located in Sarikei.

“Due to Covid-19, they have not gone back to Sarikei for Ching Ming festival for the last two years. I don’t think they will be going back this year to vote, unlike previously, where they will always make an effort to go back to Sarikei to vote,” said Pui.

Jessica Lim, a housewife, 45, whose voting area is located at Kota Sentosa said she would not be voting because she knew none of the candidates.

“In my area, there are five candidates. And I know none of them. I don’t know who they are, what are their policies and what they are going to do for my area.

“Perhaps I should go and learn more to fulfil my duty. But all this while, my husband’s business has been so bad. And it is only recently that our business has started to pick up again. Our focus now is to make our business work again. I have no time for politics,” said Lim.

Meanwhile, a lawyer who wished to remain anonymous said he would not be voting firstly because of Covid-19 and secondly, he did not have faith in all the five candidates in Batu Lintang.

“If my voting station is at Batu Kawah or Kota Sentosa, then I would go and vote for Dr Sim (SUPP Batu Kawah candidate Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian) or Wilfred Yap (SUPP’s candidate for Kota Sentosa). I know these two are trying to do something for the people,” said the lawyer. — DayakDaily