Rowena dela Cruz cast the first vote during the start of the OAV in Hong Kong/Val Cuenca,ABS-CBN News
MANILA, Philippines - The first official votes fed into the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) in Hong Kong went to members of the Nacionalista Party (NP), led by its standard-bearer, Sen. Manuel "Manny" Villar Jr.
ABS-CBN correspondent Michael Vincent reported that the first votes were cast by Rowena dela Cruz, member of a migrant workers' group Migrante, at the Bayanihan Kennedy Center in Hong Kong.
Vincent said that according to Dela Cruz, he voted Villar for president and Sen. Loren Legarda for vice-president.
Dela Cruz told ABS-CBN's correspondent in Hong Kong that she voted Satur Ocampo and Liza Maza for senators. Both candidates are also running under the NP ticket.
Vincent said voting started at the Bayanihan Kennedy Center around 7 a.m..
He said several overseas Filipino workers stayed overnight at the center to make sure that they would be the first ones to participate in the Philippines' first automated elections.
Vincent said around 3,000 Filipinos are expected to troop to the center to cast their votes on Sunday.
He said members of the Philippine consulate in Hong Kong, led by Consul General Claro Cristobal, have also cast their votes.
The month-long overseas absentee voting (OAV) officially started on Saturday.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is expecting more than half a million Filipinos abroad to participate in the OAV.
Those in Hong Kong and Singapore would be the only overseas Filipinos who will be able to use the PCOS machines. There are more than 126,000 Filipino voters in the 2 countries. – Report from Michael Vincent, dzMM