End all forms of disruptions to ensure free and fair general elections

With our 2020 general elections now only 15 days away, authorities are scaling up their efforts for holding the general elections free and fair without putting the voters at risk of coronavirus infection.
The freedom to vote is a foundation of democracy. Preserving it depends on the people being able to vote. It is important to avoid and prevent violence and a deterioration of the situation before, during and after the election.
According to a recent survey about risks which have the potential to disrupt the upcoming general elections, the COVID-19 pandemic posed a 46 per cent chance of disrupting the elections, while election campaigns were set at 13 per cent. The survey has shown that free and fair general elections can also be threatened by poor monitoring of the elections (4 per cent); by fake news, rumours and misinformation (3 per cent); by voters having insufficient voting education (3 per cent); by disruption caused by racism and misuse of religion (3 per cent) and by incorrect voting lists (2 per cent).
However, it has been found that the nearer we get to election day , the higher the occurrences of cases of fake news and disruptions caused by race and religion.
We would like to send a message to all violators that the authorities will have a no-tolerance stance towards those who threaten the free and fair manner of the general elections by disrupting the electoral opportunities of the people, including threatening, inciting riots based on racism and religion, and harming the peace of the community and the rule of law, as violators will face legal punishments.
There are differences between the 2015 and 2020 general elections. The coming general elections will be held amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. It is worth noting that the first is the threat posed by COVID-19, which has already killed more than 1,000 people nationwide. Eligible voters will line up with social distancing risking their lives to exercise their right to vote. We must mitigate other disruptions which can hinder our elections and political processes.
To ward off fake news and rumours, we are confident that people will receive the complete news about elections through balanced reporting by the nation’s media, though with different approaches, and social media in a timely manner.
Confronting all risks now is necessary to avoid chaos.

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