Voters come out in numbers, braving rain and rubbish

Long lines were seen at polling stations in many parts of Malaysia this morning, as the nation held its 15th General Election today.

Voters were undeterred by the gloomy, wet morning as they made their way, in numbers, to the polling stations nationwide that opened at 8am.

The rain did not stop Malaysians from voting at SK Dato’ Onn Jaafar in USJ 14, Subang Jaya. Image: Twentytwo13

Those in Ampang, Selangor, braved the stench and the unsightly heap of rubbish near SK Agama Rakyat KAFA Intergrasi Taman Sri Watan, as they lined up patiently to cast their votes (main image).

A voter, who was supposed to cast his ballot at the polling centre in SK Seafield, Subang Jaya, Selangor, received a rude shock after learning that someone else had used his identification card to vote. The voter immediately lodged a police report at the USJ 8 police station this morning.

Some voters admitted to not surrendering their mobile phones or had not been asked to do so by those on duty, despite the no mobile phone rule.

The Election Commission had earlier said that voters must place their phones in a separate area and only collect them after voting.

There were voters who were impressed by the smooth voting process, while others were unhappy with the long wait – some close to two hours – to cast their ballot.

Syarifah Dhamia Abdullah, 21, who is doing her internship in Shah Alam, said this was her first time voting.

“I was nervous initially but everything went smoothly,” said Syarifah, who was met outside the polling centre at SK Seafield, Subang Jaya, in Selangor.

“Perhaps, they should have more lanes. We had 11 lanes here, but I heard the polling centre in Puchong has 20 lanes for voters.

“I was here from 8am and it took me nearly two hours (to vote). Hopefully, it will be quicker the next time around.”

Syarifah waited for almost two hours before she voted. Image: Twentytwo13

Syarifah said her friends were also excited to play their part and to vote for a new government.

M. Risvin Raj, a 23-year-old digital marketer, said this was his first time voting. He was met at the voting centre in Taman Watan, Ampang.

“I’m excited to be here. I’ve been queuing up for the past 15 minutes,” said Risvin.

“My family members are voting elsewhere and I’m the only one voting here.

Rishvin is voting for the first time. Image: Twentytwo13

“I’ve made up my mind and I’m voting for the party, not the candidate,” added Risvin, who lives in Taman Dagang Permai.

Enyline Bujang, a 25-year-old temporary teacher, said she too, was voting for the first time.

“I missed the last election by a few months (before turning 21), so this is the first time I am voting,” said Enyline, who voted at Balai Raya Kampung Grogo in Bau, Sarawak.

“It was a good experience as I brought my mum, who is in a wheelchair. I was allowed to accompany her till the voting booth, and after she cast her vote, they allowed me to vote in the next booth.”

Lim On, 90, and his wife Loh Lin Thai, 82, did not want to miss their chance to vote.

“It is our duty and our right, as citizens, to vote. I hope the younger citizens will also fulfil their duty and vote for a clean government,” Lim said when met outside SK Dato’ Onn Jaafar in Subang Jaya.

Lim (right) and Loh proudly showing their inked index fingers after voting. Image: Twentytwo13

K. Narayanan, 75, who was accompanied by his wife, N. Puspaleelavathy, 71, said this was the third time they are voting in Subang Jaya.

“We moved here from Johor Bahru about 14 years ago to be with our grandchildren. We have been voting since 1969,” said Narayanan.

“We are impressed by how fast the process took today. There are special lanes for senior citizens, so that made it easier for us and those in our age group.

“I hope we get a good government. For those who have yet to vote, please do so. There is no reason not to vote,” the retiree added.

Voters lining up at SMJK Jit Sin in Bukit Mertajam, Penang this morning. Image: Twentytwo13

Three good friends – Datin Norlia Mahmud, 68, Faridah Isa, 65, and Laila Abdul Ghani, 70 – were spotted at SK SS19, Subang Jaya, Selangor.

“We’ve been friends for many years and pakat (got together) to vote at the same time,” said Norlia.

“We have done our duty. We are now waiting for our children to pick us up and enjoy a nice meal,” she added.

As at noon, the Election Commission said 42 per cent of voters had voted. There are 21,173,638 registered voters for GE15.

Of this number, 20,905,366 are ordinary voters, 146,737 are military personnel and their spouses, 118,794 police personnel and their spouses (including those from the General Operations Force), and 2,741 are voters abroad.

Tagged with: