Firsthand learning

The World Affairs Council of New Hampshire welcomed two international leaders to Nashua on Tuesday as part of the International Visitor Program.

Irham Buana Nasution and Mappinawang Yusef, election officials from Indonesia, visited City Hall, picked the brain of City Clerk Paul Bergeron about the election process in New Hampshire and even met with Nashua Mayor Donnalee Lozeau.

“What we need to learn from New Hampshire is about the administration,” Nasution said. “Like services the government gives for the people.”

Each year, the WACNH invites various leaders, scholars and specialists from all parts of the world to visit New Hampshire and create a better understanding about the various processes surrounding government in the States.

Yusef found that there were some vast differences between the voting processes in Indonesia and the United States. He felt that elected officials who run the elections, as in state votes, could be a problem.

“Here, parties are involved in the election process,” Yusef said. “In Indonesia, it is an independent centralized system, separate of the government.”

For Nasution, the biggest difference was in determining the winner.

“In Indonesia, they count every vote,” Nasution said. “They trust the results a lot more if they are counted by hand.”

Nasution and Yusef had never been to the States before this visit, but will get the full tour while they’re here.

Before visiting Nashua, they had already traveled to Manchester, Washington, D.C., and New York City. And upon finishing their stay in New Hampshire, they’ll travel to Tulsa, Okla., and Seattle before finally making the trip back to Indonesia.

“The United States is impressive,” Nasution said. “But the cold is really bothering me.”