By Poyi (Natalie) Leung
Secretary for Administration and Justice, Florinda Chan, yesterday visited three mobile voter registration stations where she said the active registration response from the public showed that their civic awareness had improved.
Chan arrived in the registration booths set up outside the Mong Ha Sports Pavilion, in Senado Square and the Public Administration Building in Rua do Campo to thank all stationing staff members’ efforts.
Since the new Voter Registration Act came into effect last month, more than 20,000 eligible permanent residents had registered to become a voter in order to participate in the Legislative election next year, the Secretary said.
Of the registered voters, 6,000 were students who lodged applications from schools registration.
In addition, the Secretary said more than 1,000 new registration were filed yesterday alone.
During the visit, Chan recognised and praised the contributions of all the participating staff who helped keep the registration services available even in Christmas holidays.
She said civil servants also understood the importance of the spirit of “people-oriented” by prolonging their working hours which she hoped such culture could be continued.
The active registration response seen on the three stations, including a number of young people in the queues waiting to be served, “reflected the effectiveness of the government’s voter registration publicity works and also an increase in Macau people’s civic awareness and responsibility”, Chan added.
In order to offer convenience to eligible residents, the Public Administration and Civil Service Bureau (SAFP) has set up some 20 mobile registration booths on streets, in the SAFP office building in Rua do Campo and public services centres for providing registration services on weekends and non working hours.
Director of the SAFP, Jose Chu, said all voter registration counters will be closed at 9pm tomorrow, the last day to file such applications in order to become qualified to vote in 2009.
Including requests to update personal data, Mr Chu said more than 30,000 applications were received since last month.
Of the 20,000 new voter registration, Mr Chu said about 2,000 were from local permanent residents aged 17.