Syed Saddiq hopeful 18-year-olds can vote by GE15

Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman speaks on the sidelines of an event in Kuala Lumpur today.

KUALA LUMPUR: Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman says the bill to allow 18-year-olds to vote has been discussed with the Election Commission (EC) with a timeline set for implementation.

“We are confident in the EC’s ability to ensure that this will be finalised by the next general election,” he said on the sidelines of an event here today.

When asked if he agreed with the suggestion by electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0 that youth aged 18 be allowed to manually register as voters ahead of any upcoming by-elections, he said it was up to the EC.

“Before anything can be agreed on, I would like to discuss it in Cabinet,” he said.

“But questions like these are best directed to the EC as I am not the EC.”

The bill to amend the Federal Constitution and allow 18-year-olds to vote was passed in the Dewan Rakyat on July 16.

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad later said that youths above the age of 18 would be automatically registered as voters.

However, the EC said last month that it would take up to two years to set up an automatic voter registration system.