Why is #UndiRosak a Thing Here in Malaysia?


As GE14 draws closer, it’s natural that people are discussing about it. The most recent conversation social media has been spurting out, especially on Twitter, is the call for #UndiRosak – the movement that advocates spoiling your own vote to boycott the main parties contesting in the upcoming election.

(Source: Cilisos)

The origin of the hashtag and idea is unknown. Although many politicians from both Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Barisan Nasional (BN) are already bashing the idea.

However, “spoiling your votes is exercising your voting rights and telling PH and BN that we don’t like the both of you,” according to social activist Maryam Lee.

At a forum on the #UndiRosak topic organised by NGO #Perpaduan, Lee, a PSM (Parti Sosialis Malaysia) supporter who is part of a segment of Malaysians who’d like to confront the elephant in the room said, “I don’t want Dr Mahathir Mohamad to be the next prime minister.”

(Source: MStar)

Since PH’s announcement earlier this month that Dr M would be their pick for PM, there has been an underlining sentiment among the rakyat (those old enough to remember) that the former PM laid the foundation for the negligence in our current administration. Why then should he be given a second chance? Numerous political opinion pieces have analysed the heck out of the matter.

While it seems that the movement is targeted at PH, many casual commenters are quick to point out that this sentiment stems from the notion that both parties, BN and PH, are considered bad candidates.

Another proponent of #Perpaduan, Hafidz Baharom acknowledged that the social media chatter among youths is already an indication of the movement’s success. According to The Malay Mail, he said, “If you ask me how to make this campaign a success, I don’t really need to tell you that because it is already happening and this forum is an example,” referring to the forum on #UndiRosak that had a full house crowd at Kuala Lumpur Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall.

Tun Dr Mahathir himself recently claimed that #UndiRosak is an attempt by UMNO to ensure BN’s victory. “Every vote counts. This is why we are against the boycott. If you boycott the election, you are keeping Najib as your prime minister,” Tun M said according to Free Malaysia Today.

Take a look at some of tweets that were under the hashtag #UndiRosak:

The Star Online reported civil rights lawyer Syahredzan Johan as saying that the act of not voting, boycotting or spoiling votes are all “part and parcel” of democracy. He pointed out that it is not mandatory for citizens to vote in general elections in Malaysia, unlike in Australia.

So at the end of the day, it all comes down to your own decision. Keep in mind that whatever you do will affects all of us as Malaysians.

Let us know what you think of #UndiRosak in the comments. For more news, click here