Who own the constituencies? Political parties or the rakyat?

Posted on June 13, 2010


“…I must say that as a citizen of the country, we are only given that choice once in every 5 years to cast that 1 or 2 votes. However, the choice of candidates may it be from the ruling coalition or the opposition is not ours but that of the competing political party. For better or worse, our choice is dependent and limited to the decision of the respective political parties in choosing and fielding the candidates.

The way I see it, the onus is on the political parties to ensure that the candidates they field are credible, accountable and responsible. Of course as voters, we can also choose not to vote or spoil the votes if none of the candidates meet our expectation…”

I have reproduced above an excerpt from a comment to my ‘Understanding abuse of power and the ultimate perpetrators’ post.

The parts in red are what I would like to touch on in this post.

Are we really at the mercy of the political parties?

Are we confined in our choice of elected representatives to candidates from both sides of the present poltical divide, regardless of how incompetent they are for the task at hand?

And if, indeed, candidates offered by the political parties are an insult to both parliament and the state assemblies, are we, the ones entrusted with the responsibility of choosing our law makers, left with no choice other than to pick one of the these misfits, or spoil our votes as the only alternative?

Share your thoughts.