A welcoming atmosphere of national festival has prevailed everywhere in all parts of the country, with voters brimming with joy and happiness at the polling stations.
As many as 91,438 polling stations in 63 cities and provinces across the country opened at 7 am on May 22 for voters to elect deputies to the 13th National Assembly (NA) and People’s Councils at all levels for the 2011-2016 term.
62 million voters will elect 500 NA deputies and 301,954 representatives to the People’s Councils at all levels. Among 827 candidates for the 13th NA (including 182 at central level and 645 at local level), 260 are women, 133 ethnic minority people, 118 non-Party members, 183 re-nominated deputies, 183 young people (under 40) and 15 self-nominated.
In term of qualifications, 304 have Master’s Degrees, 492 have graduated from universities and 31 from colleges. Out of 5,965 candidates for the People’s Councils at provincial level, 2,052 are women, 1,146 ethnic minority people, 1,211 young people 872 non-Party members, and 25 self-nominated candidates and voters will cast their ballots to elect 3,832 deputies.
With a total of 29 precincts and districts, and 577 communes and wards, the capital city of Hanoi has the highest number of candidates in the country.
“In the process of national renewal and deep international integration, the right selection of deputies who are most qualified to assume key tasks and decide important issues to the top powerful bodies at all levels, is an important factor in ensuring the success of the elections,” Mr Trong stressed.
Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Sinh Hung voted at polling station No 6 in Hoan Kiem district, Hanoi while Secretary of the Hanoi municipal Party Committee, Pham Quang Nghi exercised his duty at polling stating No 3 in Hai Ba Trung district, Hanoi.
*** As many as 4.5 million voters in HCM City are eligible to elect 30 deputies out of 51 NA candidates and a large number of representatives to the People’s Councils at all levels.
State President Nguyen Minh Triet cast his ballots at polling station No 24 in district No 3 in HCM City. Talking to voters, Mr Triet said today is a great festival for the country and I hope voters will elect the most qualified deputies to the powerful legislative body.
Truong Tan Sang, politburo member and Secretary of the Party Central Committee’s Secretariat, along with leaders from district 1 in HCM City joined local voters in casting their ballots right after the opening ceremony at 7 am.
Mr Sang said, “This is the first year we have started implementing the 11th National Party Congress’s resolution with the aim of turning our country into a modernised nation by 2020. To reach that goal, our key task is to build a real transparent State body which is of the people, by the people and for the people. I am firmly confident that voters nationwide will elect the right persons to represent and fulfill their aspirations.
***At polling station No 3 in Vinh Bao district, Hai Phong City, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung joined local voters in exercising their citizen duty very early in the morning. Hai Phong has nearly 1.4 million voters going to the polls to elect 9 deputies out of 15 nominated candidates to the 13th NA, and 67 out of 95 nominated candidates to the Hai Phong City People’s Council.
*** In Danang City, the lists of nominated candidates were posted many days before the election day to make it easier for 63,000 voters to carefully consider and make a right decision.
*** In Son La, 1,900 polling stations opened at the same time after many days of careful preparations and 715,000 voters from 12 different ethnic groups are expected to fulfill their voting right during the day.
*** As the largest constituency in the Mekong River Delta, An Giang has more than 1.6 million voters including 830,000 women. Since early morning, more than 1,400 polling stations have been packed with voters to elect more than 5,000 out of 7,800 candidates for the People’s Council election at all levels and 10 out of 17 nominated candidates for the NA.
*** At 5:30 am, after the morning prayer, more than 4,000 catholic voters from Trung Lao diocese in Truc Ninh district, Nam Dinh province went straight to the polls.
The oldest voter, Vu Thi Duong (89) was the first to cast her ballots.
Vu Tien Vuong, another catholic voter expressed hope that the newly-elected deputies will make wise decisions to improve people’s living standards. “ I highly appreciate the NA’s reform aimed at increasing the number of women and young candidates.” Vuong said.
*** Lao Cai province has 1,221 polling stations for 400,000 voters to perform their duty. By 10 am, 75 percent of them already cast their ballots.
*** All border guards in the central highland province of Dak Lak rose up very early in the morning to go to the polls in eight different places and finished casting their ballots by 10 am.
Y Tuan Mlo, from the Serepok border post said, “I was really happy to fulfill my duty because this was the first time I went to the polls.”
Colonel Nguyen Luong Hoa from the Border Guard Command of Dak Lak province said voter turnout at 8 polling stations was 100 percent.