Saturday, May 07, 2011

The Wait

Its amazing. The mechanics and voting process in Singapore. Its entirely manual. I don't know about you. But I don't think I saw a single computer in the voting centre. You can transfer billions of dollars online, but when it comes to voting, at least in Singapore, the good 'ol pen-on-paper way is still the safest? It appears to be an aberration in Singapore. We spent billions on automation, telecommunications, IT, etc. but cannot trust it enough to conduct polling.

I'm glad I went early. In fact, I arrived on the hour, at 8. Its not that I am kiasu or kiasi. Typically, Singaporeans don't get up early on Saturdays, after 5 straight days of toil. So I didn't expect too many people at 8am. I was right. The queue wasn't long. Probably 13 or 15 like-minded people in front of me. The polling centre was just a stone's throw away from where I lived. If it is going to be as hot as the last few days, I pity the people showing up later in the day. Better bring along a portable electric fan, failing which, a hand fan might be essential. Yes, the polling centre has airconing, but you're going to spend a considerable amount of time out with nature before you can get into the cool room.

Remember, the whole process is manual, with checking and double checking processes, and joining empty queues that are not your designated one is not an option. There will be several queues. Your queue number is listed on your polling card - A1, A3, A3... And you can't change queue. That's because the register, with your name on it, is only with the election officers in that queue. So if most of the people turning up with you at the polling station has the same queue number as you, you'll really have to wait, even though there is no one in the other queues. And you'll have to put up with official queue-jumping. The elderly, infirmed and otherwise handicapped will be ushered to the front of the queue, over everyone else, by the election officials.

Have a happing outing at the polling stations today!

Do's and Don'ts of Voting
Prohibited Items


hidir said...

What is the a1 a2 a3 stands for?

Anonymous said...

Well, this answer isn't useful now since the polls have been completed. A1, A2, A3... are row labels on your polling card, which instructs you to line up behind either row A1, A2, A3, etc.