Home News Featured News Forum letter writer says Govt's stance on voting is at odds with...

Forum letter writer says Govt’s stance on voting is at odds with its policy on abortion

Zhang Jieqiang said that the law is strange in that a person is considered not mature enough to vote until the age of 21 yet there is no minimum age to seek an abortion




- Advertisement -

A forum letter writer has pointed out that the Government’s stance on voting is at odds with its policies on abortion, since the Government feels Singaporeans under the age of 21 may not be mature enough to make big decisions like voting while there is no minimum age to get an abortion.

Earlier this month, Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing revealed that the Government has no plans to lower the current voting age of 21 and above to 18 and above. He explained that the current age remains the appropriate age for Singaporeans to make decisions and engage in “activities that involve significant personal responsibility.”

Asserting that the Government takes a “a graduated approach” in setting the legal ages “at which a person can undertake different responsibilities in Singapore,” Mr Chan said in a written reply: “A person’s rights and responsibilities gradually increase as one matures until the common law age of majority of 21.”

These rights and responsibilities include voting in elections to select MPs and the President, which Mr Chan called “serious choices” that necessitate “experience and maturity.”

- Advertisement -

In a forum letter published by Today last Thursday (15 Aug), Zhang Jieqiang pointed out that “the Government’s approach to voting is at odds with its position on abortion.”

Under Singapore’s Termination of Pregnancy Act, there is no legal minimum age for those seeking an abortion and there is no need for any youth to seek parental consent to undergo an abortion. Mr Zhang wrote:

“It is inconsistent that, by law, a person below 21 years old cannot vote or consent to marry; a person under 19 cannot buy cigarettes; an under-18 cannot consume alcohol; and a person younger than 16 cannot consent to sex. But a person, regardless of age, may seek an abortion.”

Noting that the youngest girl to have had an abortion in Singapore was 13 years old, Mr Zhang pointed out that a 13-year-old is considered not matured enough to consent to sex, buy cigarettes or alcohol or vote but she is considered matured enough to have an abortion. He said:

“If a person below certain ages is not considered mature enough to make informed decisions to vote, marry, buy cigarettes and alcohol, or have sex, does it not logically follow that there should be a minimum legal age for abortion?

“It is, after all, a choice that has significant consequences for the person seeking it and those around her.”

Asserting that “abortion is a serious choice involving significant responsibility, experience and maturity,” Mr Zhang called on the Government to review the Termination of Pregnancy Act and remain consistent in its approach to protecting Singapore youth from “all life-altering activities — including abortion — on which they may not be able to make informed and mature decisions.” -/TISG

Read his letter in full HERE.

Govt says Singapore youths are not mature enough to vote while other developed countries allow 18-year-olds to vote

Chan Chun Sing says Government has no plans to lower voting age to 18 years old

Send in your scoop to news@theindependent.sg 

- Advertisement -

NAC: Stop quarrelling with The Substation and help Chiya Amos

The late DPM, Foreign and Culture Minister S Rajaratnamonce observed that many Singaporeans knew the exact price of almost everything but could not always appreciate the real value of certain things. I might add until it’s too late. Is this trait...

Pining for pizza? These pizzerias will surely satisfy your cravings

Singapore — With all the interesting food choices out there, pizza remains a fan favourite, perfect for pleasing palates of all ages. But where to go for your pizza fix? Tired of nondescript, fast food-style pizza? It is a universal truth...

Ong Ye Kung: Train fares so far are not enough to cover operating costs

Singapore – While the government will continue to subsidise rail and bus operations, the bill to taxpayers "cannot keep ballooning," said Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung, noting fares also need to be adjusted. Speaking in Parliament during his ministry's Committee of Supply...

Send in your scoop to news@theindependent.sg