LIKE Pakistan, Malaysia is also in an election year. There they are due to be held on May 9. There are some similarities and differences.

Malaysia is one of the leading Muslim countries in the world, while Pakistan is a nuclear country. The politics of both countries has been dominated by foreign players.

In Pakistan, the opposition is divided into several small-and medium-sized parties and many individual candidates, while in Malaysia the opposition has been brought under a single party banner by the former prime minister, who was unceremoniously and suspiciously removed from his post on strange charges when he tried to stop corruption in the country. Since both countries are inflicted by heavy corruption, it is interesting to note that in both countries the judiciary is also hand-in-hand with the government.The difference is that in Pakistan the judiciary tries to propagate the feeling that they are working towards the benefit of the country, while in Malaysia the judiciary is quiet and out of the focus of the media.

In both countries, the judiciary seems useless and does not provide justice to the common man. It does not work towards stopping corruption within the government.

The media in Pakistan is much freer than it is in Malaysia. In the former, the media has been given unprecedented freedom, which is misused in many cases. In the latter, it is by law that they get their licence renewed every year. If the media is too critical of the government, their licence is either cancelled or not renewed.

Political campaigning in both countries is quite different. In Malaysia, campaigns are heavily based on flags of the political parties that are placed everywhere to show support. Politicians have get-togethers to get voters to listen to them, while in Pakistan political parties hold rallies with telephonic speeches and party-favouring songs to get voters to listen to them.

However, there is one big difference. At least, 95 per cent of the voters in Malaysia are educated, while less than 30 per cent of the voters in Pakistan are educated.

More than 30 million young voters will be getting an opportunity to vote for the first time.

SHAHRYAR BASEER Ipoh, Malaysia

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Comments (8)

Naseer
April 28, 2013 4:21 am
Media is free in Pakistan, thanks to Pervaiz Musharraf. No political party had the courage or any interest in giving any independence to media.
Murad Iqbal
April 28, 2013 6:56 am
There is no comparison between Malaysia and Pakistan, and big difference in the foreign involvement in Pakistan and Malaysia.
Hameed
April 29, 2013 12:08 am
There is no comparision between Malaysia and Pakistan, Malaysia has only 30 million popuplation and they they do not have free media at all.
noman
April 29, 2013 10:41 am
angola is the fastest growing economy in africs and biggest oil producer. they overtok nigeria 2 years ago. Pakistan cant certainly be compared with them at all.
Salman Cheema
April 29, 2013 2:48 am
Malaysia a huge country and 30 million population have a huge advantage over Pakistan. Highly educated, Prosperous and stability ensured its success. Its has its share of problem like corruption and Malay (Bumiputra, Son of soil) dominated society. The UMNO party have ruled and dominated the government since 1957. Recently the opposition DAP are gaining ground. The elite chinese, indian and malay are fed up with UMNO and migrating abroad while third world population are moving in. The ruling party have distributed huge amount of money to buy votes. But there is peace and stability. Pakistan on the other hand is overpopulated, poor and a begging bowl of America, China and Saudi Arabia. Education, Stability, equality and good government is the key to Pakistan progress. Lets hope the coming election brings us a good government.
Junaid Zafar
April 29, 2013 3:14 am
Dear SHAHRYAR BASEER: you have mentioned that both countries are suffering from heavy corruption. I'd like to know where did you come to know this? If you look at the Transparency International Corruption Index for 2012 you will see Malaysia Rank 54 while Pakistan is Rank 139. As you can see there is a huge gap. I am really sorry to say that educated people you are maligning Muslim states like Malaysia for their selfish pursuits.
Junaid
April 29, 2013 4:34 am
Some of the matters you mention here are incorrect. I have lived in Singapore/Malaysia for 11 years so I know that the foreign influence in Malaysian politics is practically non existent. Corruption is very limited with significant decentralization into multiple states limiting the opportunities for corruption unlike Pakistan that has a few dozen families holding the nation hostage to their whims. And the fact that almost the entire country is educated and wired to internet makes them informed unlike in Pakistan where 60-70% people are uneducated and still in rural areas with no electricity let alone internet.
A Pashtun Kid.
April 29, 2013 5:20 am
Thanks to Musharaff for some of the good things that he did to this country. Otherwise we can never even think to compare ourselves to any better countries. Or perhaps can only be compare with Chad, Angola, and other western African states.
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