Cow Beh Cow Bu

Former Counting Agent Abang: Your Vote is Secret Lah. Here’s Why!

ART FAZIL: 1. In GE 2011 I volunteered to be the counting agent for SDP. I was assigned to Woodgrove Primary School Counting Centre.

2. I did so not because I was an SDP member but I volunteered because they needed people to help to observe the counting.

3. The job to count the votes are done by counting officers. They are mostly civil service people who kena arrow to do the job.

4. The job as counting agent was to observe that each ballot paper was accounted for i.e. that every single ballot paper with the correctly marked space are all accounted for. In this case, it was for the SDP. The PAP counting agent would do the same.

5. I also learned the process of how voting is conductedand to see if it really was a secret as it has always been said.

6. This is what happened to your ballot papers:

7. You come to the registration centre with your IC

8. The polling agent will then check your name/IC number against the ballot paper.

9. Your ballot paper has a serial number BUT not your IC number.

10. Repeat: Your ballot paper has a serial number BUT not your IC number.

11. The serial number is necessary so that the political parties do not go and suka-suka print extra ballot paper for themselves.

12. Even your 4D tickets got serial number.

13. Once it all tallies, the ballot paper is given to you. You then walk to the counter with the partitions to mark X on the political party of your choice. Once completed you fold it in half.

14. You then walk to the ballot box and put the ballot paper into the box.

15. After voting time is over, all the ballot boxes will be brought to the counting centre.

16. The police will escort all ballot boxes from various polling stations to the counting centre.

17. They will then begin to pour all the ballot papers onto the tables for counting.

18. The counting process is like this- they manually sort out which X was marked against which party’s logo. It’s that primitive.

19. Each party gets a pile each on the table. If there are two parties, there will be two piles.

20. We can see the ballot papers and we can check which ballot paper was marked X to which party.

21. So sometimes, if a ballot paper is not clearly marked, each party’s
counting agent can argue if the X was clearly for his party or if it was a spoilt vote.

22. So please do not spoil your vote. Its leceh for the counting agents to argue on a half-fuck scrawl by a zombie kampung pisang.

23. Repeat : Please do not spoil your vote. The politicians, MPs or ministers don’t get to see your scrawl. if you want to protest against the government, please vote the other party, not the picture with the lightning.

24. Ok once the counting is done, and we know who won the election, all the ballot papers, both the pro-PAP and Opposition will be put inside boxes.

25. No one has the time to look through each ballot paper individually to see who voted for who. It would be almost midnight by then and everyone especially the polling agents, counting officers and counting agents would be tired as hell.

26. So please do not imagine that someone is out there to check your ballot papers and to see if you had voted for a monkey or a rat’s ass. You are not that important.

27. Once the ballot papers are put in the boxes, the boxes would in turn be sealed.

28. This whole process is meticulously done and is observed by both party members.

29. The representative of each party will then sign on the seal of the boxes.

30. This ensures that no one can open these boxes at any time, not the PAP, the government, the Opposition, not King Kong, not even Ah Kong LKY. These boxes are then stored for 6 months in a vault where no one can open unless there is a court order. It only happens if a political party is not happy with the results and wants a recount.

31. This, thankfully has never happened in Singapore since elections began.

32. After 6 months, the boxes are then taken out of the safety vault. I said the boxes- not the ballot papers! Faham? Kapisch? Eh Hiao, Bo?

33. Each representative of the political parties will then check each box to ensure no seal on the boxes have been tampered with. That means no one came in the middle of the night to open the sealed boxes to check individual ballot papers of your auntie or my uncle and if they had voted for the Opposition.

34. Once all the representatives are satisfied that there was no tampering of the sealed boxes, they will then destroy the boxes in the furnace. Poof!

35. That is the end of the life of your ballot paper.

36. The moral of the story is no one can check on who you voted for. Your vote is absolutely secret. No shit about that.

37. The only way for people to know who you voted for is if you put it up on your Facebook status.

38. Repeat: Your vote is secret.

39. Now go tell your mother, aunties and grannies about this.

40. I know so cause I was a counting agent in GE2011.



This story was written by popular Singapore music artiste Art Fazil.
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