General

Smooth voting on Saipan

CANDIDATES and voters agreed that the Commonwealth Election Commission conducted an effective information campaign in the assignment of polling centers on Saipan.

Independent House candidate Tina Sablan of Precinct 2 smiles across from the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library voting center in Susupe, Tuesday morning. Photo by Junhan B. Todiño

“It was very organized,” said Manny Duenas, a voter from San Antonio.

He said he used to vote at Francisco Mendiola Sablan Middle School, but after Typhoon Yutu hit the island, damaging several schools, the election commission decided to combine the polling centers in San Antonio, Dandan, San Vicente with Koblerville.

This year Duenas voted at the Koblerville Youth Center at 7:45 a.m., Tuesday.

Calistro I. Reyes, another voter, said he was impressed with how the election commissions “clustered” the polling centers.

 Senate President Arnold I. Palacios, Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres’ running-mate, said he was impressed by the voter turnout as he also commended  the election commission for its “effective information dissemination.”

Palacios also thanked the people for voting despite the challenges they face after the typhoon.

Precinct 1 Rep. Leepan Guerrero, who is seeking reelection, said there was a good turnout because the election commission successfully informed voters about the designated polling centers.

Former Rep. Tina Sablan, a Precinct 2 House candidate, said the new polling centers were a “real challenge” for some voters who did not have transportation. But she said candidates offered rides to these voters.

Speaker Ralph S. Demapan, who is seeking re-election in Precinct 2, said the election commission did its best to inform the public about the changes in polling centers.

After Election Day, he said he will immediately return to work because “there are pressing issues that need to be dealt with.”

He thanked the people for going out to vote “for the right candidates who will truly represent them in their government.”

Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres, who met with supporters outside the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library polling center, said he was impressed with the high turnout.

One voter, Matilde Taisacan, tried to cast her ballot at Joeten-Kiyu, but her name was not on the list.

An election commission staffer said Taisacan may have failed to vote in the past election. She was referred to the election commission.

Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/108863-smooth-voting-on-saipan

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