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Voter's Education: How to Make an Informed Decision

February 2, 2023
Voter education is critical for making educated election decisions, and knowledge about the candidate's character, intelligence and morality is vital.
Voter's Education How to Make an Informed Decision

In the last several hundred years, human civilization has gained consciousness and foresight, resulting in the construction of certain fundamentals to shape governance and form institutions that can protect humanity and provide opportunities to grow. Hence, people of knowledge and wisdom started to realize that democracy should be adopted, which provides the commoner with the right to choose his representative who can solve his problems while his day-to-day activities and businesses run as usual.

In The Quran (Holy Scripture), Chapter 42, Verse 38, Allah says, "And those who answer the Call of their Lord [i.e. to believe that He is the only One Lord (Allah), and to worship none but Him Alone], and perform prayers, and who (conduct) their affairs by mutual consultation, and who spend of what We have bestowed on them".

Based on the verse mentioned above, many scholars concluded that the foundation of a definitive political system is based on the collective wisdom and opinion of learned personalities and not on the opinion of a single person, his selfishness, and his ego.

No one can deny the importance of democracy, but in countries like Pakistan, where most people are illiterate, it is challenging to find intellectuals and wise people. In the last 75 years, Pakistan's political system and process have been ruled by a few powerful men who use their wealth, fame, power, and corrupt system to remain in power and form political parties to benefit their interests and businesses.

Political parties then nominate their candidates for the elections, and people vote for them. However, the masses are unaware of the candidates' integrity, honesty, and character. Such candidates do not represent people; they work for their masters.

This system is to be improved by opting for the following:

  1. Voter education and engagement- Encourage citizens to learn about issues and candidates and participate in the electoral process through voting, town hall meetings, and other means. Further, promote more substantial and inclusive public discourse on topics by providing chances for citizens to engage in polite dialogue and seek consensus on key choices.
  2. Campaign finance reform- Limiting money's impact on politics ensures that elections are won on the merits of the candidates and their ideas rather than the size of their war chests.
  3. Redistricting reform -To ensure that voting districts are fair and representational, electoral district boundaries should not be manipulated for political benefit.
  4. Strengthening ethics and transparency laws - Holding elected officials accountable by fully disclosing their financial interests and strengthening punishments for unethical behaviour.
  5. Conflict of interest -Limit the elected officials to misuse their power and authority to achieve personal gains by questioning their objectivity and capacity to act in the public interest.
  6. Improving election administration- Ensuring that elections are conducted efficiently and securely, with safeguards in place to prevent voter fraud and defend the integrity of the vote.
  7. Encouraging political competition - Making it easy for alternative voices and parties to participate in the election process, promoting diversity of opinions, and increasing elected officials' responsibility.
  8. Improving access to information - Providing citizens with accurate and unbiased information about candidates and issues to make informed voting selections.
  9. Implementing e-governance - Using technology to improve accessibility and efficiency in the democratic process, such as online voting and digital platforms for civic involvement.
  10. Promoting political transparency - Elected officials and political groups must declare their funding sources, lobbying efforts, and other political donations to promote accountability and decrease the impact of special interests.
  11. Protecting the independence of the judiciary - Assuring that the judiciary is free of political influence and meddling and can make impartial judgements on behalf of citizens.
  12. Promoting international cooperation - Encouraging worldwide collaboration and sharing ideas on democratic governance to promote best practices and contribute to creating a more just and equitable world.

As the literacy rate improves, the masses learn more about the democratic process and play a role in their country's upbringing. The great scholar of his time, "Dr. Allama Iqbal," once said:

"Islam is an amalgamation of religion, way of life and politics, where the political life starts from fulfilling your responsibilities rather than seeking your rights".

Hence an elected parliament include people of the highest piety, intelligence, and knowledge. 

This article is originally written by Muhammad Aslam Ch. in Urdu and translated by Usama Zulfiqar.

Please share your views in the comments section below. 
About Author | Muhammad Aslam Ch.
Aslam has more than 35 years of experience as a former government electrical engineer and has worked for a number of both public and commercial enterprises. He has read more than 4,000 books, studied the Holy Scriptures, and researched the most recent scientific discoveries.

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One comment on “Voter's Education: How to Make an Informed Decision”

  1. The informed electorate is the cornerstone of a healthy democracy. It is encouraging to see initiatives being taken to educate voters in this Islamic country, fostering an informed and participatory citizenry. The dissemination of accurate information and the cultivation of critical thinking skills are essential for the democratic process to flourish. I applaud the efforts being made to empower the citizens of this nation and encourage continued investment in voters education for a brighter future.

any great suggestions?

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