New EC members should set benchmark of integrity, honesty

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YOURSAY | ‘The future of Malaysian democracy lies in the hands of the new appointees.’

King appoints new EC members, including Bersih activist

P Dev Anand Pillai: Very wise and good choices of individuals to helm an important body like the Election Commission (EC).

Let us hope that they can bring it up to the level of the Indian Election Commission, which deals with the world’s largest democracy and is one of the best when it comes to conducting elections.

Jasmine: Congratulations and best wishes to the new appointees and the team. However, respect, admiration and support will have to be earned.

Clean up the mess as much as you can before the 15th general election. Hopefully, necessary legislative amendments will be made to strengthen this commission.

But your moral commitment to being independent of political and governmental interference must start from day one. Be courageous to expose any such interference. Be bold to resign if necessary. All of you are in a position to raise and set a new benchmark of integrity and honesty.

PS: Aren’t there supposed to be seven members in the EC?

Vent: Very pleased to see that the young and very bright Faisal S Hazis has been appointed to the EC together with the young activist Zoe Randhawa.

By the way, for the information of his detractors, Faisal is from Sarawak and is probably one of the most knowledgeable about the Sarawak political scene and its shenanigans, and is unafraid to speak about it.

Anonymous 770241447347646: Finally, a very important issue has been put to rest. To see the list of people appointed will instil confidence in the hearts of the people, that the EC will be independent.

There have been many other changes in different organisations. Changes have been slow but definitely the results will show their effectiveness in time. Hope the Malaysian people will have the patience to wait.

The Wakandan: Very good choices. Very happy with them. May this spell a new Malaysia in term of elections, and I hope the past partisan EC members who served more as extended arms of the then government will be things of the past.

Congratulations to the new appointees, and may God bless them.

Ian2003: Good choices, especially on the appointment of law lecturer Azmi Sharom as the deputy chairperson of the EC.

Congratulations and may the good work of these people further strengthen our election system and our country’s democracy.

Fair: Azmi, heartiest congratulations to you, sir. Besides the announcement of the last election results, this is the most heartwarming news to me and maybe a whole lot of others.

The future of democracy is in you people newly appointed.

Mechi: This is another slap on former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak’s dictatorship and cronyism approach which has been discarded by Pakatan Harapan.

This is called people engagement, by ensuring the new team reflects the diversity of Malaysia.

Annonymous: Great choice, especially Azmi Sharom, a true Malaysian patriot to ensure the essence of democracy: that ‘one person, one vote’ and rule of the majority prevail at all costs, to save the country from the tyrants and the corrupt in power and bring the country forward for the progress of all Malaysians!

Sakit Hati: Good choice. Now the ball is in your court. Go and deliver the result Malaysians have been waiting for.

OMG!: Good. Now the EC must be made responsible to Parliament, like the MACC should, and their offices moved out of the Prime Minister’s Office.

The nomination of future EC commissioners should be taken away from the prime minister. We need to study how that process can be as broad-based as possible, so that no political party or sitting government can ever manipulate elections as thoroughly as the old EC did.

Cogito Ergo Sum: Excellent line-up, but two of the members are serving civil servants. I still have doubts about members of the civil service and where their loyalties lie.

But they are outnumbered by the presence of the other three who have a sterling record of service to the nation. All the best.

Vgeorgemy: These appointments are as revolutionary as the appointment of Azhar Harun as the EC chairperson.

Anonymous 42891143555133: This is a great line-up and a good move which will help restore some of the government’s recently battered reputation.

Possession of a degree is less important than intellect

Old Fella: Writer Terrence Netto may have missed the point. The complaint was not that the deputy minister was not put on the carpet for not having a degree.

He created the impression, knowingly or unknowingly, that he had a degree from the University of Cambridge, when his degree was a correspondence degree from a doubtful university not properly recognised in the US.

New Hope: Fair comment, Netto. However the issue at hand is not about ability on honesty and integrity, which is a precious commodity for politicians.

It is a widely acknowledged phenomenon that a politician’s trust factor is his lifeline for survival in the rough world of ’empty promises’ and reality, and most of them are judged by their trustworthiness and honesty.

A public figure with honesty issues will not gain the trust of the public, and whatever he says or do will not find support. Trust has to be earned and not accorded by virtue of position of power.

Anonymous_4ed852e9: Totally agree with the author. Usually the mediocres will use this as an excuse not to excel: “His exam result is not good but he knows his work well, even better than those smarter ones.”

Actually, the crucial bit to be a minister is not the brain but the heart. Have the heart to do what is right for the people, a heart that’s willing to feel the cries of the people, a heart that is humble to accept ideas from smarter people and use them, a heart to fear God.

By the way, fugitive businessperson Jho Low has both the degree and the intellect. See, he excels in what he does. At least he put Malaysia on the map of the world, can our bogus degree holders do that?

Fair Play: Just like having an education however advanced (such as at masters or PhD level) does not make one educated, having a degree does not make one more intelligent or an intellectual.

Wisdom is acquired by making mistakes, and more importantly, learning from them. The same goes with being an intellectual through intense thinking and reasoning and the use of one’s most important gift, the mind.


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