China’s Xinhua News Agency reported that over 69 million voters across Vietnam cast their votes on May 23 to elect 500 NA deputies from 866 candidates, and 3,726 deputies to provincial-level People’s Councils, 22,952 deputies to district-level People’s Councils and 242,312 deputies to commune-level People’s Councils.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, authorities have asked voters to strictly follow COVID-19 prevention and control measures, including wearing masks and maintaining social distancing at polling stations, said the article.
All voters’ entry time should be recorded to be used for contact-tracing if a positive case or a suspected case of COVID-19 is detected, it quoted the Vietnamese Ministry of Health. Special ballot boxes were brought to hospitals, quarantine facilities and lockdown areas for COVID-19 to ensure people’s voting rights.
The UK’s Reuters quoted Vietnamese NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue as saying that organisers have taken measures aimed at ensuring the elections take place in a safe environment.
“I hope all voters, knowing their role as the owners of the country, will join the vote to select the most trusted and worthy candidates to represent their voices,” Hue said ahead of the elections.
Meanwhile, Australia’s website canberratimes.com.au highlighted voters’ awareness of pandemic prevention and control when all wore face masks while going to polling stations.
“In Hanoi’s Long Bien district, about 30 voters were seen queuing by a voting booth waiting for their turn, all wearing masks. Before queuing, the voters had their temperature taken at a nearby table where free masks and hand sanitiser were offered, with a loudspeaker broadcasting advice to keep a safe distance,” the article wrote.
In its article on the elections, halonoviny.cz newspaper of the Czech Republic said that the new parliament is expected to work with the Party and Government to outline and implement domestic and foreign policies to realise the targets set out by the 13th National Party Congress, especially turning Vietnam into a developed country by the mid-21st century.
Meanwhile Dr. Gerhard Will, a German expert on the East Sea at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik; SWP), stated that the Vietnamese National Assembly has made great contributions to the country’s achievements, particularly in the fight against the pandemic.
Sharing the same view, veteran journalist Detlef-Diethard Pries of Neues Deutschland newspaper stated that the legislative body’s efforts in improving the lives of the people, including ethnic minorities, are also commendable.
They expressed their hopes that the parliaments of Vietnam and Germany will strengthen cooperation in the time to come to facilitate the two countries’ relations.