Law Firm - Viet Nam set to vote for new parliament
Voters from across Viet Nam are preparing to cast their ballots for members of parliament and People's Committees on Sunday.
Polls would be open for 12 hours beginning at seven on Sunday morning and voters would cast their choices for 500 representatives to the 13th National Assembly and over 300,000 members of local People's Councils, said General Secretary of the Election Council Pham Minh Tuyen.
Votes would be counted on Sunday night, he said.
"Preparations for the day have been ongoing with thoughtful steps involving people from the Central level down to the local level," said Tuyen in an interview with Vietnam News Agency.
He also said voters in all localities had been well-informed of the election's importance, procedures, their rights and duties via a diverse array of communication efforts. They also received information about all of the candidates.
Inspection and supervision to ensure a smooth election will be implemented in all constituencies, which consist of about 91,000 electoral units nation-wide.
The latest reports as of yesterday from localities revealed that everything is on track for election day, which is commonly known as a "Festival for the entire nation."
More than 7,300 voters from six mountainous and isolated communes in Minh Hoa and Bo Trach districts in the central province of Quang Binh completed early election procedures yesterday.
Most of the voters were from the Bru, Van Kieu and Chut ethnic groups.
"Everything went fine. Procedures were carried out in a democratic, legal, safe and efficient manner," said Chairman of the Bo Trach People's Committee, Phan Van Gion.
An early election was held in these areas because travel can be difficult, particularly during the rainy season.
In the Tay Nguyen (Central Highlands) province of Kon Tum, military officers and soldiers have been mobilised to work with local authorities to prepare for the election.
Soldiers spoke with local ethnic minority residents in their mother tongue to spread the word about the election, said officer Le Phuoc Tan.
Additional health workers have also been dispatched to commune level clinics to support local medical services during the day.
Head of Kon Tum Health Department Nguyen Thi Ven said all physicians and nurses would work around the clock to serve voters in the case of an emergency.
A Vietnam News Agency correspondent reported that residents in upland communes in the midland province of Phu Tho were eager for election day.
In Yen Son, a cash-strapped and far-flung commune in Thanh Son District, lists of candidates were posted several days before the election.
The district's People's Committee chairman Dinh Ky Thi was upbeat about the election.
"Candidates for this term are younger but hold higher levels of education than those in the previous one. Female candidates account for 34 per cent," he said.
Voter Dinh Van Tai from Tan Lap Commune – the district's furthest commune – said: "We hope they [candidates] will help secure more funds to improve roads, energy supplies and waterworks in our villages."
As regulated, a series of 14 day-long meetings between voters and candidates wrapped up on Wednesday throughout the nation.
Deputy chairman of the Viet Nam Fatherland Front Nguyen Van Pha said that most of the meetings were "lively, frank and constructive."
In response to voter concerns about candidates keeping their campaign promises after they were elected, Pha admitted that there were no specific regulations which held elected officials accountable for keeping their promises.
"Voters have right to ask authorised bodies to evaluate candidate responsibilities in post-election meetings if they find anything they are not pleased with," Pha said.
Elections to the National Assembly and local People's Council take place every five years but they are usually not scheduled concurrently as they are this year.
New National Assembly members will convene their first session 60 days after the election at the latest, while People's Councils will convene within 30-45 days.
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