KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysians in China are pooling resources to make sure their postal votes make it into ballot boxes on Nov 19.
With less than a week until the election, these overseas voters are in a race against the clock.
The strict Covid-19 control measures in the Middle Kingdom have led to delays in postal services in certain places, including Beijing. The measures include a requirement for all overseas items to be placed in quarantine for seven days at the port of entry.
This means the earliest most voters are expected to receive their ballot papers will be on Nov 16.
In view of this, Malaysians from around China have joined hands on a project, titled Overseas Postal Vote Campaign, to bring back the ballot papers by hand.
One of them, who only wished to be known as Tan, started the ball rolling by sending out messages to his friends and participating in various Malaysian group chats.
He called on volunteers to coordinate the project from their respective cities or to assist in hand-carrying the ballots back to Malaysia. The word spread, and as of now, he is leading a team of coordinators in 19 cities.
“Every vote counts. It is our responsibility, and all Malaysians must vote,” he said.
Tan said when the ballot papers arrived in Malaysia, there would be fellow coordinators here to receive the documents, sort them out and hand them over to the respective returning officers.
To date, the group has reached out to approximately 2,000 Malaysian voters.
Consultant Carine Wong, who has worked on two election campaigns, has been sharing her knowledge by answering general election questions in various group chats.
Most of the questions came from new voters, who wished to know about the voting and counting system, standard operating procedures and guidelines, the constituencies they belong to and the lists of candidates, among others.