NST: All MBs, CMs agree to amend state laws to enable individuals aged 18 to become election candidates

KUALA LUMPUR: All heads of state governments have agreed to amend their respective state constitutions to allow individuals aged 18 to become candidates in general elections, state elections and by-elections.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the matter was decided at the 137th Menteri Besar and Chief Ministers' Meeting yesterday.

"The meeting also agreed that there should be more engagement sessions between the Federal and State governments especially on development projects in all states," he said in a statement here today.

The prime minister said to stimulate economic activities, he also called on all state governments to expedite the implementation of economic and business projects.

"Among the matters which should be handled well is the delay in approving land and business licences at state government and local authority levels," he said.

Ismail Sabri said all state governments also need to improve their delivery systems and processes by reducing bureaucracy through digitisation initiatives.

According to Ismail Sabri, also discussed in the meeting was the joint effort of the federal and state governments to realise the National Green Technology and Climate Change Agenda including the rehabilitation of destroyed forests and land degradation by 2030.

To achieve the objective, the government is considering giving incentives to state governments to implement programmes and projects to ensure biodiversity sustainability.

"The granting of compensations in various forms is an initiative to encourage state governments to improve protection and preservation of forest including logging activities and gazetted water catchment areas," he said.

The prime minister said the government would be setting up the State Digital Economic and Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) Council (MED4IR Negeri) to study the charges and fees of government and local authorities agency services as the rate of payment for telecommunications services is high and burdensome to the people.

He said in the meeting, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz and Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed tabled the 2022 Budget now in debate stage as well as the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) to all Menteris Besar and Chief Ministers.

"Through the approach of the Malaysian Family, I urged all parties to put aside their political background and stands to bring the country out of the Covid-19 crisis as well as to revive the economy," he said. – Bernama

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