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Did you vote at the last General Elections? If no, what were your reasons? You might have thought that you do not have good reasons to vote. That voting is a waste of your time. Apparently, whether your party or the other wins, the effect will be the same – no better fortunes for the country.
But, what if you had voted? Things might have turned out differently. Who knows?
Before you dismiss the idea of voting in the next General Elections constitutionally due in 2021, here are five reasons you should vote.
Five Reasons to Vote
- It is your constitutional right – Every Jamaican citizen aged eighteen years and older have the constitutional right to vote. This is a right that was fought for by Jamaica’s forefathers. Are you on the Voter’s List? Twice per year, during May 31 and November 30, you can update your voter registration and ID.
- Your vote counts – If you doubt that your vote counts, just look at the results of the last General Elections. The governing party won it by a single seat. Granted that over the course of three by-elections since 2016, the seat majority held by the JLP has improved. Consider what would have happened if you had not voted.
- You are helping to maintain Jamaica’s Democracy – This is among one of the important reasons to vote. Indeed, voting in any election is maintaining the hard fought democracy that Jamaica enjoys. Jamaica is among the fortunate countries in the world that still has free elections. For those old enough to remember the turbulent 1970s and 1980s it can be said that Jamaica has come a long way.
- Voting ensures that the best candidate wins – It goes without saying that for the best candidate to win an election, he or she must get enough votes. Far too often, the voter turnout in Jamaican elections is low to moderate. Consequently, the election results reflect the will of the majority of those who turn up. For the remaining 50 – 60% who did not vote, the final results may, more often than not, be what they did not want. In such cases, the lesson is clear – you should have voted!
- Voting is an achievement you can be proud of – If, for no other reasons to vote, voting is an achievement that you can be proud of. This act of casting your ballot to select the best person or party to lead the country is your contribution to the nation’s development. Withholding your vote is like an act of deprivation. Jamaica does not deserve this treatment. Instead, you can participate in the electoral process with the satisfaction that you have done a worthwhile thing that you and your family can be proud of.
Is Voting a Waste of Time?
Still think there are no good reasons to vote in Jamaican elections? Do you believe that voting is a waste of your time? Then, here are three quotes that may help persuade you.
“We do not have government by the majority. We have government by the majority who participate” Thomas Jefferson
“Bad officials are elected by good citizens who don’t vote.” George Jean Nathan
“If you don’t vote, you lose the right to complain.” George Carlin
The next General Elections are constitutionally due by 2021. What would stop you from voting then?