Constitution (Amendment) Bill tabled today (Updated)

11 Jul 2019 / 14:25 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Bill to amend the Federal Constitution to lower the voting age from 21 to 18 was re-tabled with amendments at the Dewan Rakyat today.

It was tabled by Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, just a day after it was withdrawn.

The Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2019, which was first tabled on July 4, was withdrawn on Wednesday to include amendments proposed by the opposition relating to automatic voters registration and to lower the eligible age to contest in elections to 18.

This came after the opposition bloc threatened to reject the bill if their demands were not met.

Following the withdrawal on Wednesday, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had expressed confidence that the amendment would receive the two-thirds majority support required from the Dewan Rakyat to pass the Bill.

Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob had also said that the opposition would cooperate since the government has agreed to their conditions.

The Bill will be tabled for second and third reading and debated at the current sitting next week, before being put up for vote.

This is the second proposal to amend the Federal Constitution under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government, after its first attempt — to restore the status of Sabah and Sarawak as equal partners in the federation — was rejected in the last session in April.

PH currently has 139 MPs of the total 222 seats, nine short of the required number for the amendments to pass and will require the support of the opposition.

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