I know that we have never experienced anything like COVID 19 and people need help but how will one distinguish between treating and helping someone out for COVID 19 purposes.
COVID 19 is a blessing for many politicians because some will use the excuse of COVID 19 to treat others and in so doing influencing them to vote for them. COVID 19 has impacted us since March 2020. A plan should have been in place from March to deal with the residents and businesses up to a year. As the elections draw near, there will be a lot of handouts such as food, laptops and money and this will be done in the name of COVID 19 when in fact it maybe treating.
According to section 70 of the Elections Ordinance, treating means “every person who corruptly by himself or by any other person either before, during or after an election, directly or indirectly, gives or provides or pays wholly or in part the expenses of giving or providing any food, drink, entertainment or provision to or for any person of corruptly influencing that person, or any other person to vote or to refrain from voting at such election’
The Government announced the plan of food distribution of food to 11,000 households in light of COVID 19. Whenever this distribution takes place, will it be used to influence people to vote for the politicians? If so, is this considered treating? If not, then is it ok for the independent candidates and other political parties to do a food distribution to households without it being consider treating
Ground breaking events
I noticed for the past forty four years, usually the year before an election takes place, there are a lot of ground breaking events. At these ground breaking events, foods, drinks and entertainment take place. Is this treating? If not, can any other politician have ground breaking events for their business and offer foods, drinks and entertainment without it being consider treating.
Parties at Christmas time
We know that elections will not be in 2020 and so I am quite sure there will be a lot of parties during the Christmas season which of course is normal. However, given that elections will be in 2021, will parties during Christmas time consider treating. If so, should the Government be allowed to have Christmas parties? Can close friends and family members of politicians hold a party without it being consider treating?
Your vote is worth more than food and drinks. When the food is finished, what will you do? When the laptop breaks up, what will you do? Will you be remembered after the elections? The food, the unemployment benefits and the stimulus benefits are your money. It is your money because you paid the indirect taxes in the treasury. It is not the money of a political party. Do not feel obligated that you have to vote for politicians because you receive food and stimulus money. COVID 19 is new to the world and all countries have to implement temporary measurements in place to take care of their citizens.
Know your worth. Do not fall for treats. You need a long term plan from the politicians, a plan that will empower you and make your life better than what it was before.
For many years, politicians and supporters have used “treats” to secure a vote. Now that we are faced with COVID 19 and the elections are near, more treating will take place. Open your eyes. Do not be used by any politicians from any political party. Treating is taking place right in front of you but the name given is COVID 19. The advantage the incumbent government has is that they are the Government and so it will be difficult to prove that treating is taking place.