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Buddhist, Khmer community vote in NA election

Update: May, 22/2016 - 16:00
Monk Thích Minh Ân, 26, of Minh Đạo Pagoda in HCM City’s District 3, delivering voting papers early yesterday. VNS Photos Văn Đạt
Viet Nam News

HCM CITY – The Most Venerable Thích Thiện Nhơn, chairman of the Việt Nam Buddhist Sangha’s Executive Council, led a group of Buddhist monks who voted at election unit No 60 on Trần Quốc Thảo Street this morning.

Several citizens including monks from pagodas in HCM City’s District 3 arrived at the election unit to learn about voting procedures.    

The Most Venerable Thích Thiện Nhơn said the council had encouraged all monks and nuns to select the appropriate people to lead the country.

“With the election, we hope to have a new generation of leaders who care about benefiting the people and the country. I hope that the candidates’ promises will be realised after the election, contributing to building a wealthy and prosperous country,” said the monk.

The Most Venerable Nhơn said that state leaders had helped the development of Buddhism in the country.

He said he hoped that the elected deputies could create better conditions for overseas Buddhists to return to the country for exchanges and for local Buddhists to visit other countries.

“I am confident about the promises the candidates have made and I believe that they can realise the promises,” he said.   

Accompanying the Most Venerable Nhơn to the election point, Monk Thích Minh Ân, 26, of Minh Đạo Pagoda, who voted for the second time in his life, said he hoped his vote would contribute to finding qualified deputies struggling for development and prosperity. 

“As a young voter, I hope the elected deputies can satisfy expectation of the people nationwide. The newly elected National Assembly should pay more attention to social welfare for underprivileged people and the environment,” the monk said.

Monk Ân said there were 15 voters at Minh Đạo Pagoda.   

Voters’ expectations

Voting at the election unit 50 at Candaransi Pagoda were the Venerable Danh Huy, Permanent Member of the Việt Nam Buddhist Sangha’s Executive Council, Theravada Buddhism followers and local citizens.    

Theravada Buddhist followers and the Khmer community in HCM City gathered at the voting site early this morning.

The venerable Danh Huy said that Vietnamese Buddhist followers and Khmer community placed high expectations on the new National Assembly.

“Nominated candidates are talented people with enthusiasm and sympathy for the living conditions of citizen and their desires. If they are elected, they will satisfy expectations of citizens,” said Venerable Danh Huy.

Like others, Venerable Monk Huy called on the deputies to pay more attention to the social welfare for citizens.

There will be several challenges for the newly elected deputies such as education and climate change, which will directly affect the people’s production.

The monk suggested that the winning candidates create the most favourable condition and help people tackle climate change, education and employment.

Before the election day, the pagoda translated materials about the election regulations and biographies of candidates.

The Khmer community in HCM City was eager for the national election day, said Monk Huy, adding that they want to exercise their citizenship rights and responsibility to the country.       

As a member of the Khmer community in Việt Nam, he suggested that the new National Assembly pay more attention to agricultural products made by Khmer since most Khmer make a living from agriculture, which is being affected by climate change.

He said there should be technical instruction for them to increase production or rotate to new kinds of agricultural products, including capital assistance for their business expansion.

“The intellectual standard of Khmer ethnic groups is lower than other ethnic groups in Việt Nam. In order to helping them overcome poverty, I hope the new National Assembly will invest more in education for the Khmer community,” he said. 

Việt Nam has 17.8 million Buddhist monks and nuns while HCM City has more than three million Buddhist followers. The Khmer community in HCM City has more than 40,000 people. More than 90 per cent of Khmer in the city follow Buddhism.  VNS


Young Buddhist monks deliver their voting papers at the Candaransi Pagoda in HCM City’s District 3.
The Most Venerable Thích Thiện Nhơn, Chairman of the Việt Nam Buddhist Sangha’s Executive Council, was the first voter at HCM City’s election unit No. 60 on Trần Quốc Thảo Street in District 3.


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