PENAMPANG, Sept 20 — Parti Warisan Sabah (Warisan) deputy president Datuk Darell Leiking today backed Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal’s suggestion to allow Covid-19 patients to vote and said quarantined voters can be allowed to vote early.
In agreeing with Shafie that no one should be deprived of their right to vote, Leiking said the Election Commission (EC) are more than capable of handling the situation if positive Covid-19 patients are allowed to vote.
“Nobody should be deprived of their right to vote, which I think is the basic tenet in our democracy.
“So if they are given a chance to vote while they are in quarantine, I think it will not be a problem for the EC, in fact, they should even be given early voting and the EC can make arrangements for this,” he said after campaigning in for his candidacy in the Moyog state seat, in Kampung Sugud here this evening.
Leiking said the allocation given to EC should also be sufficient for them to handle his suggestion of early voting, while still ensuring all aspects of safety, security, and possible health hazards are all taken care of.
“Give them (patients) two days before that, or a day before that.
“The EC with the wealth of knowledge and expertise that they have, I don’t think it will be a problem for them,” he said.
Leiking added how he hopes the EC will not deny anyone their right to vote, regardless of their health status.
“The EC must side the people for them to exercise their democratic right, over who should represent them,” he said.
This comes after Opposition leaders chided Shafie for suggesting that positive Covid-19 patients be allowed to come out and vote, even in red zones Tawau and Lahad Datu, subject to added precautions and physical distancing regulations.
Shafie had made the comment when asked about the rising Covid-19 cases in Sabah.
The Warisan president’s suggestion has been condemned by leaders from Barisan Nasional and Parti Cinta Sabah, who accused Shafie of being inconsiderate and failing to see the potential health risks.
Shafie was even accused of being selfish and desperate by opposing politicians, who said his suggestion was evident of how Warisan are only interested in winning the elections and less bothered about stopping the spread of the virus.
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