Seven qualities my elected rep should have

Seven qualities my elected rep should have

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Dr Mohamed Rafick Khan Abdul Rahman

Kindly forgive me for minor editing by translation of Malay word to English and changing the country name to internationalize this good concept

I am writing to send a message to all the aspiring  elected rep and parliamentarians on what they need to do to get my family’s votes in the next general election.

I guess this is due to our ignorance of our role as a voter. Following the herd mentality, we got swayed by fiery speeches, promises and the ‘good man’ image portrayed to us. The fact remains that we do not know who we voted for.

He or she does not even know we exist. I don’t expect elected representatives to know everyone but the very least they can do is to take the effort to make themselves known to us.

In the coming elections, we have decided to cast our votes based on facts, not promises. As such, only those who fulfil most of the following criteria will win our vote:

Criteria No 1: The elected representative must be available

It means that he should be_

  • accessible via e-mail
  • or mobile phone.

I would understand if he is too busy to answer phone calls but the minimum expectation is that he has a dedicated local community website with his email address.

I expect him to_

  • read
  • and reply emails.
  • He must regularly schedule meetings with the people in his constituency, irrespective of who they have voted for and what their political beliefs are.

Criteria No 2: The elected representative must have compassion

The elected representative must show compassion for people irrespective of their race and political inclinations.

Criteria No 3: The elected representative must treat fellow citizens equally

The elected representative must see all citizens as_

  • one race,
  • not by their skin colour.
  • He must appreciate that we are all immigrants to this land, albeit some earlier than others.

Criteria No 4: The elected representative must have a clear, measurable target for the people

The elected representative must present clear, measurable goals for people to judge his performance. Let the people decide on your promises. Don’t tell us the what you can do for the world. Start small and tell us what you can do for us, the people living in your constituency.

This is far more important to us than what is happening in Iraq or Palestine.

What is the point of going overseas to help others when you don’t do enough at home?

Criteria No 5: The elected representative must work towards community bonding

There is a need to go back to basics. People who live in big towns spend most of their time working and isolating themselves in their own homes. There are very little communal activities that encourage people to interact.

We live in an era where we do not know what our neighbours do and in some cases, we do not even know their names. My elected representative must use his resources to unite and encourage people to get together.

Criteria No 6: The elected representative must be free from corruption

I think this is self-explanatory.

Criteria No 7: The elected representative must serve others before himself

By nature, the job has long hours and is service-oriented. Thus, I expect the person to show a strong social service character. He must be an active member of various social organisations.

Politics is not about_

  • gaining wealth,
  • enriching your family members
  • or having a title.
  • This is a service-oriented job. If you don’t have what it takes, don’t do it.

My criteria may seem like a tall order for some. It is like looking for a needle in a haystack. I suppose if the person cannot fulfil all these seven criteria than he or she should fulfil at least two thirds of it. If our votes are important then do the right thing. Good luck in contesting.