Lao Cai: Application of information technology to serve the election

On May 23, nearly 500,000 voters in Lao Cai province cast ballots at 1,138 voting stations to elect 6 deputies to the 15th National Assembly and 3,575 People's Council deputies at all levels and tasks, 2021-2026 term. The percentage of Lao Cai voters who voted reached over 99.98 percent, with 7/9 districts and cities reaching 100 percent. Election activities and election organization was strictly followed by regulations, ensuring security, safety, and order. To achieve that result, the Lao Cai province’s Election Commission used a variety of strategies, including synchronously deploying solutions to use information technology to serve the election.

KElectronic health declaration at voting stations in Lao Cai province

Application of IT in propaganda

Propaganda and mobilization are important tasks that contribute to the election's success. Propaganda activities have been implemented synchronously by Lao Cai province from the province to the grassroots in a variety of forms, bringing into play the effectiveness of the electronic information system (newspapers, e-mail portal/page, social networks) to help inform the news quickly to every citizen, particularly those living in remote, isolated, or ethnic minority areas, assisting people in understanding the importance of elections and their civic responsibilities.

To spread information, units, localities, and press agencies in the province have increased their use of social networks such as zalo, facebook, and youtube. The information you need to know, the messages about the election, the prevention and control of covid-19 are presented in a variety of formats, and many sets of infographics (infographics through images) are visually designed, vivid and concise, has piqued the interest and attraction of voters and the general public.

Many mass organizations, residential areas, and neighborhood groups have formed Zalo, Facebook, and other groups to share and provide regular information to families and voters. Lao Cai city, Sa Pa town, and Bao Yen district are examples of places with many models, innovative ways of doing things, and effective use of information technology in propaganda. It is not necessary to go to a voting or a culture house to obtain information; voters can capture all information about candidates, such as the time and location of the polling place. On May 23, in particular, many voters actively used information technology application platforms to post, share, and spread beautiful and meaningful images of the all-citizens festival.

The use of IT has been extremely effective in propaganda and is significant in the context of the complicated development of the Covid-19 pandemic because this solution has enabled people to access information proactively and quickly, while remaining safe and effective.

IT application to increase interaction between candidates and voters

Facing the complicated situation of the Covid-19 pandemic, Lao Cai has flexibly organized voter meetings for candidates in two forms: face-to-face and online voter meetings. Accordingly, the province held an online conference for the candidates of the 15th National Assembly, the candidates of the People's Councils at the provincial and district levels. 14/14 provincial-level voting stations in 9 districts, towns and cities simultaneously held 14 online conferences to contact voters for 92 candidates for the 16th Provincial People's Council, term 2021-2026; nearly 150 bridge points have been activated, ensuring to serve conferences efficiently and economically. Contacting voters via online form to the bridge points is a necessary and appropriate way in the context that the whole country is implementing the prevention and control of the Covid-19 pandemic.

For the first time, the Lao Cai province Election Committee used software to support the synthesis of results of the election of deputies to the 15th National Assembly and People's Councils of Lao Cai province by computer with internet connection result. The software actively assisted in accurately counting votes and synthesizing voting results, reducing the time required from 2 to 6 hours compared to the previous manual method.

IT is also used extensively in the software system to improve the sending and receiving of electronic documents between state administrative agencies and at all levels of government, thereby contributing to increased efficiency in direction and administration from provinces to agencies.

Electronic health declaration at voting stations across the province

In order to promptly support voters to make medical declarations conveniently and quickly through scanning QR codes at voting stations, localities in the province have actively implemented the registration of quarantine points and carried out declaration health report by QR Code in the prevention and control of Covid-19 pandemic. All electoral voting areas of Lao Cai province with 1138/1138 have created electronic Covid -19 disease control points. 

Lao Cai has also strengthened, propagated and advised people to make medical declarations online on the Bluezone near-contact detection application, comply with scanning QR Codes when moving through medical quarantine checkpoints and when going to other public locations.

With the synchronous and drastic implementation, Lao Cai continued to rise in the ranking of Bluezone users, ranked 6th out of 15 provinces in the Northern Midlands and Mountains, and ranked 26th out of 63 provinces and cities across the country about the percentage of Bluezone users.

By many flexible and creative ways, Lao Cai province has applied IT to help voters most conveniently when participating in the election, contributing to the overall success of the election of deputies to the 15th National Assembly and members of the People's Councils at all levels of Lao Cai province, term 2021-2026.

Thu Huong

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