Pemagatshel elected Choining Dorji, 47, as its National Council (NC) elect yesterday.  

Choining Dorji from Dechenling gewog in Nganglam drungkhag, won 3,846 votes against other candidates – Jamtsho’s 1,349 votes, Sangay Wangchuk’s 1,821, Sherig Dhentshog’s 2,133 votes and Sonam Dendup’s 3,583 votes.

He won 1,506 postal ballots and 2,340 votes through the EVM from 60 polling stations. Choining Dorji said he is happy that the people chose him as their council representative. “This is a big responsibility and I’ll work hard to fulfill all my commitments and the interest of the people of Pemagatshel,” he said.

The NC elect has worked with the High Court, the Royal Civil Service Commission, Anti-Corruption Commission, DHI-INFRA and CDCL.

Among other candidates, Jamtsho secured 612 postal ballots and 737 EVM votes while Sangay Wangchuk got 1,061 postal ballots and 760 EVM votes. Sherig Dhentshog secured 938 postal ballots and 1,195 EVM votes while Sonam Dendup won 1,468 postal ballots and 2,115 EVM votes.

A voter, Sangay Tenzin, 78, was the oldest voter at Shumar gewog centre polling station. He had travelled from Nangkor to cast his vote because he wants the capable and the best to win. “I do not know how long I will live but as long as I live, I don’t want to miss the opportunity to vote and chose my representative,” he said.

A-18-year-old Kelzang Dawa said since he was so excited to vote because this is his first time. “I don’t know all the candidates but I came to vote because I didn’t want to miss this opportunity,” he said. 

The office of the returning officer rejected eight facilitation postal ballots and two conventional postal ballots yesterday. 

Of the 26,089 eligible voters registered in the dzongkhag, 12,732 voted on yesterday. The voter turnout was about 48 percent.

From the 5,876 postal ballots Pemagatshel received, 281 ballots were rejected during the opening of envelope A on April 19. Segregating the postal ballots at the office of the returning officer in Shumar gewog centre stretched until 10pm.

Of the total postal ballots received, 2,113 were from conventional postal voters that included ballots from the armed forces, overseas and remote areas while 3,763 were received from the facilitation booths.  

 “We have rejected the postal ballots on the grounds of not having Identity Declaration Certificate (IDC), empty envelopes, same witness, no envelope B and incomplete information, among others,” officials said.

Kelzang Wangchuk | Pemagatshel