Last year on this very date, we went for Bersih 3.0. Walked from Causeway Bay to Malaysia Embassy and hand in our petition for a clean and fair election.
Now 1 year down the line, here I am, casting my vote. This is in fact my 3rd time casting vote for General Election and 1st time as Postal Voter. Historical moment for our Nation.
Since I’m staying pretty far from Malaysia Embassy, I plan to leave early and get the voting done as my project is implementing an important change today as well. Didn’t want to get too busy with work then later forget to go for voting.
When I arrive at the embassy at about 10:30, there was a huge crowd of 20 people, volunteers wearing yellow clothing. I thought they were lining up to vote, but actually they were there to educate us how to vote since this is the 1st time Malaysia have Postal Voting.
So they asked where I’m staying, cause some place only has parliament seats, no state seats. They showed me a flow chart of the content of the Postal Voting Package. Each voter will get the following:
- A brown envelope (Sampul Keutamaan)
- Inside the Sampul Keutamaan, there’s Envelope B (If you are staying in non KL, you will have 2 things inside this Envelope B)
- Inside the Envelope B, there’s 2 forms (Borang), 2 ballot paper (Kertas Undi), 2 envelope A (each of this is marked whether it’s for Parliament or State)
- Next they told me that once you get the brown envelope, you are supposed to open it in front of the saksi, then check the Serial No. on the ballot paper, the Envelope A & the form. Make sure the Serial No. matches.
- Then sign on the forms and pass to the saksi to sign the forms. After that proceed to the voting booth and cast your vote.
- Once it’s done, put the ballot paper into the respective Envelope A.
- Then place the Envelope A & the respective Form back into the respective Envelope B.
- Then put the Envelope B into the Voting Pouch (Kotak Undi).
Whoa…almost fainted after going thru the flowchart LOL. I’m glad that I only need to vote for Parliament seat and not State, so it’s less hassle. I can imagine how messy it is having so many papers and putting in different envelopes. I’m also not sure if the Serial No. for Parliament and State ballots are different or same? Any idea?
What about indelible ink? Oh..postal voters no ink ink business, that’s what they told me. Only applicable for those back home. Wouldn’t this be subjected to fraud? And I thought I recall seeing some photos on FB that police officers/armies voting from postal votes had indeliable ink!! Confused.
Then with full confidence, I went into the Malaysia Embassy and was greeted by their staff. Please have your IC/Passport ready as they will request for it. The staff will check your name, and give you a temporary visitor pass and a sticker tagged to you. I’m not sure if this is standard procedure or not cause the Embassy is located in a 26 floors building.
They reminded that no photos or videos are allowed at Level 26. So I quickly snap a few photos when I was in the lift LOL.
When I arrive at 26 floor, there were a 3 rows of people seated there, and surrounded by 3 vote casting booths. Furthest was the saksi, then followed by the High Comm guy and his pembantu, then a row of observers/SPR workers (I suspect they are SPR cause they were wearing SPR lanyard).
There were no clear instruction where to go until the High Comm’s pembantu wave at me and ask me go there. Then handed over my IC, and I got my brown envelope (Sampul Keutamaan).
Then I was asked to proceed to the row of observers/SPR workers, where I need to open the envelope in front of them, do the mix and match of the ballot paper, the form and the Envelope A. After checking, I signed on the borang and the observer counter signed. They told me, either the saksi or them can sign it.
Next I proceed to the vote casting booth, did my pangkah…oh, BTW, my parliament seat this year got 3 contestant. Hmm…I didn’t know it’s so heavily contested LOL.
Then I put my ballot paper into the Envelope A. Then put the borang & Envelope A into the Envelope B. Note that you MUST SEAL your envelope B with the glue provided at the booth. NOBODY told me this, but I figured that myself. If not what’s the glue for eh :).
Then I drop my Envelope B into this Voting Bag (similar to the Voting Box you usually see when you vote, just that this is a bag).
And I’m done!!
This whole process took me like 8-10mins, from the time I got my Sampul Keutamaan to the time I drop the Envelope B into the bag. For those that would be voting for State Seats, you might take slightly longer.
To summarize my entire experience on Postal Voting, I feel that it’s pretty messy. There were people standing by the side, don’t know what they doing there, but there’s no help given as in go where and where once you are in that Voting Room. There is also no labelling and the setup is quite poor. It should be setup like follow anti clockwise so that when you go in, you just walk from 1st stop, 2nd stop, 3rd stop easily. I felt like I was walking in a maze LOL. Well that’s how it was being setup in HK.
So I’ve done my duty as Malaysia citizens. The voting day for those back home is on 5th May. With so much of things to do during the voting, I urge that you all should practice at home how it’s done with mock up so that it can be smoother when the actual day comes. If not, maybe a lot of voters would be disappointed as there isn’t enough time to cater for everyone!!
May the force be with you Malaysia…and we are all watching you from HK. Change for a better nation!!