Referendums were postponed until Dec. 18 due to the epidemic situation. Environmental groups recently questioned why the Central Election Commission failed to include those who will turn 18 before the new voting date on the voter register.
The impact of the epidemic can be felt everywhere. Numerous events can't be held as scheduled, including referendums scheduled for Aug. 28. They have been postponed to Dec. 18. The Central Election Commission said the compilation of the register of eligible voters will be completed on Aug. 8. That means that anyone under the age of 18 on Aug. 8 will not be eligible to vote. In response, environmental groups criticized this approach, saying it is depriving youths of their right to vote.
Hsieh Jui-en, Algal Reefs Referendum Convener for Universities & Colleges："They didn't include those who will turn 18 before the new referendum date on the register. We believe this violates Article 7 of the Referendum Act, which says anyone reaching 18 years of age shall have the right to referendum."
Wild at Heart Legal Defense Association lawyer Tsai Ya-ying said the postponement of the referendums wasn't the result of a court ruling them invalid and then organizing a re-vote. According to Article 8 of the Referendum Act, this means that the age and period of residence of a voter need to be calculated up to the day before the polling day.
Tsai Ya-ying, Lawyer, Wild at Heart Legal Defense Association："Article 8-2 of the Referendum Act explicitly states that the age and period of residence of a voter shall be calculated up to the day before the polling day."
Kurt Tu, Asst. Professor, Dept. of Public Administration, TKU： “You still have a long time to compile the register, but you're applying the method for a natural disaster or force majeure to handle the referendum postponement. There is actually no justification for this in the literal interpretation of this law.”
Environmental groups called on the government to uphold the rights of all those who have turned 18, and include all those born between Aug. 29, 2003, and Dec. 18, 2003, on the voter register. They said the government cannot deprive these 70,000 first-time voters of their rights. If the CEC fails to act, these groups will mobilize with other civic groups to take the next step.
環團呼籲政府應該重視所有年滿 18 歲國民的權益，依法將92年8月29日到同年12月18日的出生者，列入投票權人名冊，切勿剝奪7萬名首投族權利，若中選會後續沒有作為，環團也不排除會聯合其他公民團體做下一步行動。