(MENAFN - Arab News) Despite the rain and adverse weather conditions, many voters turned up to participate in the 21st Board of Directors elections at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Those elected will serve a four-year term on the board of this prestigious body
Observers and analysts put down the high turnout of participants to the strong campaign launched by the contenders over the past few months
There are 51 candidates competing for 12 seats. Six of the 12 board seats are allocated for traders, while the rest are for industrialists
Sources at the chamber said that Sunday's polls will be for the members and subscribers of the chamber in Rabigh, Al-Laith, and Al-Qunfudah. The afternoon and evening periods have been reserved for women voters.
The polls will last for 6 days with the first day reserved for voters from the areas outside Jeddah; Monday for women and the remaining days for the men voters
This time the polls will be conducted through a rigorous electronic system that leaves no roomor rigging or any other violation.
Adnan Mandourah, secretary general of the chamber, said that this election is especially important, not least because the number of subscribers has increased by almost half from the previous session which had 45,000 subscribers
There is also an increase in the number of contenders, whose number stands at 51, representing various age groups and backgrounds.
Mandourah said that this time subscribers will vote for one person only. "We have done away with the 'bloc' voting system which was a custom in the past elections.
There is also a change in the demography of the contenders, he said. "Now you see more youth and women actively participating in the elections." Participation rates also seem to be generally higher than in previous elections, he added.
Fahd As Sulami, a candidate, said that the single vote system is much better, "since it makes you vote for a person that you would like to see elected, instead of voting for blocs as we used to do in the past," he said