Sat, Jan 14, 2012 - Page 3 News List

2012 ELECTIONS: Extra buses carry students home to vote in elections

By Jake Chung  /  Staff Writer, with CNA

An election official holds a ballot for today’s presidential election at the Taipei City Election Commission yesterday.

Photo: AFP

First-time voters, a group tagged as potentially pivotal in the outcome of today’s elections, were offered half-price discounts to return home to vote yesterday, as this week coincides with their final exams.

The Kuo-kuang bus service, in tandem with National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, National Taiwan Normal University, National Taipei University of Education and Taipei Medical University, has promoted half-price tickets in Taipei and Greater Taichung as an incentive for students to return home to vote.

Lin Sheng-hsiang (林聖象), spokesperson for the First-Time Voters National Policy Observation Group, said statistics from Kuo-kuang bus showed that 12,000 students had returned home using the discounted fares between Monday and Thursday.

As more students were set to return home after their final exams yesterday, nine express buses from 5am to 5:30pm were providing services from Taipei to Greater Taichung, Chiayi, Greater Tainan and Greater Kaohsiung, Lin said, adding that the buses ferried more than 400 students back home.

The extra buses were laid on in the hope that more young people would participate in the elections and decide their own future, Lin said.

Only if more young people participate in politics will political parties pay attention to the age group, Lin said.

A lot of students are ambivalent about voting, tired of political squabbling and feel that voting is not important because it will not change the future, Lin said, adding that this mindset is wrong.

Young people should be more active in voting and use their votes to decide their own future, Lin said.

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