Covid 19 and Malaysia's Democratic Resilience
COVID-19 not only endangers the physical health, job security and social lifestyle of an individual but it also potentially has far reaching consequences for democracy. As more exposed segments of the community fall victim to the serious damage of the pandemic, established systems of democracy can also suffer from the disruption. The response to the crisis has in some cases involved adjustment or even suspension of the core principles of democracy such as accountability, free and fair elections, transparency, prison reforms, media freedom, and protection of minorities.
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COVID-19 and Malaysia’s Democratic Resilience
Malaysia’s democratic institutions have been tested in various ways ever since the pandemic struck in March this year. The paper highlights that election-management will need to be improved, Parliamentary proceedings have been compromised, federal-state government relations and coordination have worsened and the lack of transparency and accountability in procurement and financial disclosure has undermined confidence in the response to the crisis. Furthermore, this paper highlights that the pandemic has also revealed shortcomings in Malaysia’s treatment of vulnerable communities. In conclusion, Covid-19 presents a chance for Malaysians to give deeper thought to the fundamentals of Malaysia’s democracy and the importance of working harder towards meaningful, inclusive and structural changes.