Polling agents play an important role in Singapore’s electoral process.
It is the first and possibly, the one location that could cause a voter to have a change of heart and/or mind if they were being influenced at the polling centres.. The polling agent’s role is that of an enforcement officer, to ensure that there is fairness by all parties.
Fairness to ensure that no candidate or polling agent from another party is able to influence a voter through any means or ways possible.
Some ways that could possibly be done to influence, is to whisper “Vote XXX” to a fellow voter or to stand at a location close enough to apply undue influence/pressure on the voter to vote for a certain party. The polling agent could also observe to ensure that the ballot boxes are properly sealed and not tampered with prior to and during transportation to the counting centre.
This is why, the job of the polling agent, is critical and important.
For alternative parties, trying to find individuals to volunteer as polling agents is no easy feat when compared to the incumbent who has access to a pool of volunteers within their capacity as PA Grassroots Advisers. As much as PA has claimed to be apolitical, personal experience tells me otherwise as I have received messages calling for support for the grassroots adviser.
Therefore, if you’d like to lend a hand to the alternative cause and would like for your issues to be debated in parliament, besides voting for the alternative and encouraging others within your constituency to do the same, you can also volunteer your time to assist and to rally others around you to volunteer to help the alternative cause.
Newer and smaller partiers like Red Dot United, would no doubt be in need of such volunteers as do other older and smaller parties like Singapore People’s Party.
Do reach out to them directly, and sound out your interest to volunteer in our democratic process.
To read more on the role of polling agent, click here.