PETALING JAYA, Oct 30 — Pakatan Harapan (PH) Youth chief Dr Kelvin Yii said the coalition would treat its election manifesto as a “holy book”, in an attempt to address the scepticism stemming from the coalition’s failure to honour its 14th general election pledges.
Dr Yii, who is also the DAP Socialist Youth chief, stressed during the launch of the movement’s manifesto proposals today that the current PH was not the same as the one that won in 2018.
“Many times, we talk about the manifesto, there are some negative sentiments. Some leaders used to say that our manifesto is not a holy book but I am here to convince the people that we will take all these promises and also the PH manifesto as a holy book.
“The views of the previous leaders have already passed, but under the leadership of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, we will take every manifesto seriously because this is indeed a holy book. We want to breathe new life into politics, not just rhetorical empty promises.
“This is our offering to the people of Malaysia. We are open and transparent to be held accountable because this is the new and mature politics we at Pakatan Harapan want to offer,” Dr Yii said.
After PH reneged on some of its manifesto pledges after winning the 14th general election, its prime minister at the time, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, said the PH manifesto was not a “bible”.
Today, PH Youth pledged 25 youth-centric policies such as abolishing the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971, enacting laws against climate change, and ensuring the provision of affordable housing, among others.
Other priorities include a new repayment schedule for National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN), addressing workplace discrimination, managing career pathways, decriminalisation of suicide, and mental health.
“We want to breathe new life into politics, where we focus on finding solutions and policies for the issues faced by young people and Malaysians and not just putting our focus on the sentiments that divide us. We want policies that solve our issues regardless of race or religion,” Dr Yii said.
“Today, I am proud to present our manifesto that includes addressing issues of quality education, student autonomy, youth socio-economics, health, institutional reformation, and the environment. These are the issues that are close to the heart of the youth and they will be our focus for the future.”
It also repeated some pledges from the GE14 manifesto that went undelivered, with additional promises including a targeted PTPTN debt cancellation programme for the poor and B40 households, a fixed rate of RM199 for students planning to travel between East and West Malaysia.
The new PTPTN repayment schedule will be implemented based on the salary for new graduates starting from RM4,000.
Today, PKR Youth chief Adam Adli said among PH’s mistakes during the previous election was failing to properly explain the timelines for its manifesto pledges, leading to the view that these were not honoured.
Among others, he claimed some of the more ambitious pledges such as the repeal of the UUCA would have needed more than the 22 months that the coalition was able to stay in power.
Also present at the launch were the PH Youth deputy chief and Amanah Youth women’s chief Nurthaqaffah Nordin, DAP central executive committee member Young Syefura Othman and Kampung Tunku assemblyman Lim Yi Wei.
PH will launch its official manifesto this Wednesday (November 2).