Open more polling stations, increase voting time

Datuk Peter Minos

KUCHING: The Election Commission should open more polling stations and increase voting time in order to reduce crowding and queues once the State Election is held.

A political observer Datuk Peter Minos said although the election might be held next year during which over 80 percent of Sarawakians would have been fully vaccinated, it was still necessary to practise safety and caution.

“With the Emergency being proclaimed effective Aug 2 to Feb 2, 2022, the election is most likely to be in March next year.

“Hence, the State Health Department and Election Commission has to tighten the standard operating procedures (SOPs) and ensure that the virus will not spread during the election,” he added.

He hoped that by March next year, over 80 percent of eligible Sarawakians would be fully vaccinated and the state achieving herd immunity.

“I think that achieving herd immunity and complying with the SOPs will be sufficient.”

Minos suggested that more policemen should be present during the election to ensure better compliance with the SOPs.

“In addition to that, a better information stream on the election will help voters in reminding them of venues and time for the polling,” he added.

Commenting on the extension of the emergency period, he opined that the immunisation exercise would help Sarawak to flatten the Covid-19 curve.

“The six months emergency is an enabler as it gives more time for the Ministry of Health and others to do their anti-Covid works.

“Hence, the decision is very wise and smart. It is better to be wise and safe at all times especially with the deadly Covid-19 virus still lurking,” he said.