Does Malaysia Need a Youth Parliament?

During the recent “One Million Youth Gathering” which took place on May 27-29, 2011, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak outlined six new initiatives, which includes the formation of a Parliament of Youths. The said parliament would be a venue for the government to solicit the views of the youth about politics, governance, and other national issues.

What are the reactions of bloggers?

Point Blank Rambler says youths should have more say towards the direction of the country:

Dan aku sangat berharap bahawasanya Parlimen Belia ini tidak bias – dikuasai oleh kerajaan sepenuhnya. Sebab, sebagai negara yang mengamalkan Demokrasi, setiap rakyat adalah berhak menentukan hala tuju sesebuah negara dan benda ni termasuklah golongan belia sendiri, betul tak?

Kalau dah tujuan asal pembentukan Parlimen Belia ni adalah untuk melatih generasi belia dalam menentukan halatuju negara, maka mereka perlu menghormati hak kita dalam membuat keputusan tanpa sekatan.

I hope the youth Parliament will not be biased; to be fully controlled by the government. As a country that practices democracy, each citizen has his/her rights to decide the direction of the country, and this include the youths, right?

If the aim of the youth Parliament is to allow the young generation to decide the country's direction, then they have to respect that right without any restrictions.

The Flying Kick says the opposition will have more control of the youth parliament:

Bila Najib Abdul Razak memutuskan untuk mewujudkan Parlimen Belia bagi mendedahkan belia-belia negara ini kepada proses demokrasi yang sebenar, ramai yang menyambut baik. Dan sudah tentulah yang paling gembira dengan penubuhan Parlimen Belia itu adalah pemimpin Pakatan Rakyat.

Sedangkan UMNO pula sekadar boleh berbangga kerana telah mewujudkan Parlimen Belia. Pengisian dalam Parlimen Belia tidak akan ke mana-mana, seperti mana yang berlaku dalam agensi-agensi lain seperti KEDA, KESEDAR, KETENGAH dan sebagainya. UMNO hanya menubuhkan tetapi akhirnya yang menguasai adalah puak-puak Pakatan Rakyat.

Parlimen Belia juga bakal menerima nasib yang sama. Kebanyakan pemimpin UMNO hanya aktif apabila mereka hendak meminta jawatan tetapi untuk mengisi tanggungjawab jawatan yang diminta, biasanya mereka tidak ada masa. Masa mereka banyak dihabiskan untuk perkara-perkara lain termasuklah untuk golf!

When Najib Abdul Razak announced the creation of a youth Parliament as a way to introduce young Malaysians to the democratic process, many applauded the idea. And the happiest group would be the Opposition.

UMNO (the leading political coalition) can only be proud for creating the Youth Parliament. It won't go anywhere just like other agencies such as KEDA, KESEDAR, KETENGAH, etc. UMNO creates it but the people from the Opposition will control it.

The youth Parliament will receive the same fate. UMNO leaders will be active when they want to hold the posts but they will not have time to fulfill their duties. They will spend more time doing something else, including golf.

Followers of share their thoughts:

@Azziskandar a great idea as long as it isn't too politicized. Hope the youths work out actual needs rather than “personal” agendas

@shusshshussh: A youth parliament is a good idea to exchange/debate laws/opinions to decrease generation gap. But not for legislation.

Abdul Rahim (via Facebook): Good idea…so that in future parliamentrians are more responsible, attend all sessions, dont make it into a circus and argue with facts, not emotions….

Dhallan (via Faceboook): I believe it's just a hype for publicity. By now that proposal is already shelved. Dont think it's gonna happen

@sherylhosulynn: I think it's a good idea, but they should let us say what we have in our minds, and not limit us if they do make this happen!

@JFJuhari: my first motion is please remove censorship act. Thank you

Ilhan Hikaru (via Facebook): It will be a success as long as they refer to Islamic Law

@zulfadly (from Brunei): Wow. Your government proposed that? Amazing. Hope it happens. Will be a momentous achievement if it happens. #YouthPower

As of now, there are no official updates on the Youth Parliament.

Thumbnail used is from the Flickr page of amrufm used under CC License Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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