KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — Gerakan leader Baljit Singh’s remarks on fielding young, sexy women in elections reinforce chauvinism and misogyny in politics, DAP’s Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud said today.
The DAP Socialist Youth executive committee member, who had contested the 2014 Teluk Intan by-election, said such comments that objectify women are among the reasons why talented young women avoid politics.
“I hope Gerakan takes Baljit’s idea seriously and allow more young women participation in politics.
“However, I also suggest that they discard their outdated, sexist and misogynistic mindset and treat women with equal respect if they are truly sincere in empowering women in Malaysian politics,” Dyana Sofya said in a statement.
She added that young women are empowered in the DAP and Pakatan Harapan, pointing out that the PKR president is a woman and the DAP had approved a 30 per cent quota for women in its central executive committee.
News portal Malaysiakini reported Baljit, who is the Gerakan legal and human rights bureau chief, as saying at the Barisan Nasional (BN) party’s annual general assembly yesterday that young, sexy and beautiful women should be fielded to boost Gerakan’s chances in future elections.
He also reportedly described 28-year-old Dyana Sofya as a “young Malay girl”.
Baljit later apologised for his remarks and claimed that he was misquoted, saying his comments on a “young, sexy” candidate were in reference to an elderly party member.