Saturday 4 August 2012

With varsity visits, PKR aims to win students for Pakatan

By Thanusya Shanmuganathan

Aug 04, 2012
Nurul Izzah said PKR stood for the youth. — File pic
KUALA LUMPUR, August 4 ― PKR leaders will start calling on university campuses next month in a bid to recruit more students into the opposition, setting the stage for a stiff contest with Barisan Nasional (BN) for the youth vote in the coming polls.
The party is making full use of the government’s recent decision to lift the ban on student participation in politics through amendments in the University and University Colleges Act 1971.
“PKR will be visiting universities in September to initiate talks pertaining to their rights to do practise politics,” PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar said during the launch of Kelab Mahasiswa Keadilan at the party’s headquarters here.
“Our target is to go to all universities, starting with those in the Klang Valley such as Universiti Malaya (UM).”
She added that this was in response to Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah’s recent statement that the UUCA amendments would render the Act more meaningful in terms of permitting student involvement in politics.
“I am holding on to his (Saifuddin)’s promise that students (aged) 21 years and older are now allowed to be involved in politics after Section 15 of the Act was scrapped.
“PKR will enter universities. It is the best time to approach students to give them a chance to voice out their opinions,” she said.
Nurul Izzah added that PKR will fight BN if it continues to use students as a tool to win elections, alleging that BN has often meddled in campus polls.
“BN’s interference in campus elections... is a political trick to ensure that students remain fearful of BN.
“[Datuk Seri Najib Razak] is more blatant for using students for his own political agenda,” she added.
The Lembah Pantai MP said that PR previously had received many objections about its attempt to engage students.
“Before this, only BN could enter the campuses,” she said.
“PKR represents the youth. If we fail to be relevant on youth-related issues, there is no reason for us to remain,” she added.

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