An Unofficial Guide to Voting in Singapore


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What happens at a polling station? How do I cast my vote properly? These questions and more are answered in this personal and unofficial guide to the polling procedure during the General Elections in Singapore. Learn more about practising your democratic rights in Singapore.

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An Unofficial Guide to Voting in Singapore

  1. 1. An Unofficial Guide to Voting in Singapore<br />Prepared by Balasingam-Chow Yu Hui<br />Twitter: @yuhui<br />
  2. 2. your Polling Station<br />
  3. 3. Polling Station layout<br />Note: Actual layout may vary. Not drawn to scale.<br />
  4. 4. Election Officials<br />
  5. 5. Election Officials<br /><ul><li>Ensure that election rules and procedures are followed according to the law
  6. 6. Confirm electors' identities based on electoral rolls
  7. 7. Provide assistance to electors as required</li></li></ul><li>Candidates' Polling Agents<br />
  8. 8. Candidates' Polling Agents<br /><ul><li>Ensure that election rules / procedures are followed according to the law
  9. 9. Confirm electors' identities based on electoral rolls
  10. 10. Record polling irregularities to notify election officials and/or respective candidates
  11. 11. Not allowed to talk to electors who have received their ballot papers</li></li></ul><li>Voting Booth<br />
  12. 12. Voting Booth<br /><ul><li>Private area for electors to mark their ballot papers in secret
  13. 13. Provides proper writing materials for marking ballot papers</li></li></ul><li>Ballot Boxes<br />
  14. 14. Ballot Boxes<br /><ul><li>Collection boxes for all ballot papers
  15. 15. Marked to indicate the polling constituency, district and station
  16. 16. Only one slot on top to drop in ballot papers</li></li></ul><li>Voting Procedure<br />
  17. 17. Polling hours<br />Polling stations are open to electors at 8am to 8pm on Election Day<br />If you arrive before 8am – join the queue<br />If you arrive after 8pm – you have forfeited your opportunity to vote<br />Election officials determine the clocks used to indicate the polling station's opening hours<br />
  18. 18. 1. Collect your ballot paper<br />
  19. 19. Before entering the Polling Station<br />Queue up in an orderly manner<br />An election official may check your poll card to ensure that you are at the correct location<br />Candidates may talk to you if you are outside the polling station's boundary<br />Candidates polling agents may talk to you within the polling station's boundary, but not to influence your vote<br />
  20. 20. 1. Collect your ballot paper<br /><ul><li>Provide the election official with:
  21. 21. Your poll card
  22. 22. Your identity card</li></li></ul><li>Confirming your identity<br />Election official calls out your name and elector number (indicated on your poll card)<br />Election official and candidates' polling agents strike out your name from their respective electoral rolls<br />Election official writes your elector number next to your ballot paper's counterfoil<br />
  23. 23. Confirming your identity<br />You cannot proceed until the election official and candidates' polling agents have successfully struck out your name from their respective electoral rolls<br />
  24. 24. What if your identity has already been confirmed?<br />You may need to take an oath of identity in front of the election official<br />You are given a ballot paper that has a different colour from regular ballot papers<br />The election official endorses your ballot paper with your name and elector number<br />The election official writes your elector number in a "Tendered votes" list<br />
  25. 25. Explaining the voting procedure<br />At his discretion, an election official may explain the voting procedure to you<br />If he does so, the candidates' polling agents must be present to witness his explanation to you<br />
  26. 26. 1. Collect your ballot paper<br /><ul><li>Election official provides:
  27. 27. Your identity card
  28. 28. A ballot paper</li></li></ul><li>Your ballot paper should have:<br />A seal from the Elections Department<br />A serial number<br />Full names of the candidates<br />A symbol for the candidates<br />Ample space for you to mark your vote next to the candidates' names<br />
  29. 29. One person, one vote<br />Check that you have one ballot paper only!<br />If you have more than one ballot paper, you may be charged with cheating at the elections.<br />
  30. 30. 2. Mark your vote<br />
  31. 31. 2. Mark your vote<br /><ul><li>Mark your vote in silence
  32. 32. Do not act suspiciously, e.g. looking at other people
  33. 33. Take a reasonable amount of time to mark your vote
  34. 34. When done, fold your ballot paper in half</li></li></ul><li>Marking your ballot paper<br />Mark your vote clearly next to the names of your chosen candidates<br />DO NOT mark next to more than one set of candidates names<br />DO NOT write your name anywhere on the ballot paper<br />DO NOT write your elector number anywhere on the ballot paper<br />
  35. 35. What is an acceptable mark?<br />Parliamentary Elections Act (Chapter 218), section 50:<br />Any mark on the ballot paper clearly indicates the elector's intention for the stated candidates<br />Candidates' counting agents may dispute any marks<br />The Returning Officer has the final say<br />
  36. 36. Acceptable marks<br />Advised by the Elections Department:<br />Some possibly acceptable marks:<br />Fuck you!<br />
  37. 37. If you accidentally spoil your vote<br />Notify an election official immediately!<br />If the election official accepts your reason, he will:<br />Cancel your current ballot paper<br />Provide you with a new ballot paper<br />
  38. 38. If you are blind or incapacitated<br />The election official will assist you in voting:<br />He reads out the names of the candidates<br />He listens to and acknowledges your choice<br />He marks your ballot paper according to your choice<br />He folds your ballot paper<br />He drops your folded ballot paper into the ballot box<br />
  39. 39. 3. Cast your vote<br />
  40. 40. 3. Cast your vote<br /><ul><li>Check that you have folded your ballot paper in half
  41. 41. Drop your ballot paper into any ballot box
  42. 42. Once your have dropped your ballot paper in a ballot box, you cannot retrieve it!</li></li></ul><li>Choosing a ballot box<br />You can cast your vote in any ballot box<br />No one can force you to cast your vote in a particular ballot box<br />
  43. 43. 4. Leave the polling centre<br />
  44. 44. 4. Leave the polling centre<br /><ul><li>Check that you have your identity card
  45. 45. You are strongly advised not to linger at the polling centre</li></li></ul><li>And that is how you vote in Singapore<br />
  46. 46. Disclaimer<br />This is a personal project<br />It is NOT endorsed by the Elections Department<br />I am not responsible for any unexpected action to any voter due to inaccurate information provided within<br />
  47. 47. Contact<br />Balasingam-Chow Yu Hui<br />Twitter: @yuhui<br />Facebook:<br />