Filipinos in HK start voting for president

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 11 April, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 11 April, 2010, 12:00am

They say that elections prove Christianity works, because on polling day voters are miraculously resurrected from the dead.

But things went smoothly yesterday as polling opened at the Bayanihan Kennedy Town Centre for Hong Kong's Philippine workers to vote in their national election, a month ahead of voters back home.

For the next 30 days they will be able to cast their votes to elect the country's next president to succeed Mrs Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

In Hong Kong, 95,355 workers have registered to cast their ballots. The process will also serve partially as a test of the computerised system being used for the first time this year, known as the Automated Election System. The machines are due to be used by some 50 million voters in the Philippines on May 10.

Polls show the battle is shaping up as a contest between two senators, the Liberal Party's Benigno Aquino, son of the late democracy icon and former Filipina leader Corazon Aquino, and developer Manuel Villar of the Nacionalista Party.

But neither of them got the thumbs up from a selection of voters who spoke to the Sunday Morning Post.

Butch Durias, a banker, was backing Richard Gordon of the Bagumbayan Party. Gordon was a member of the Senate and former mayor of Olongapo city.

'To me he is the most capable and experienced candidate. He's got a great track record,' Durias said.

Alvin Piedra and his wife Jassen voted for Eddie Villanueva of the Bangon Pilipinas Party because they believed that he was hard-working and sincerely wanted to change the Philippines for the better.

Thousands are due to vote today as it is the only day of the week that workers such as domestic helpers get a day off.