The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it expects 4 million new voters as the registration period for the 2022 elections resumed on Monday.
“We expect more than 4 million new registered voters to come within the next 20 months. Remember, the registration period started today and will run until September 30, 2021,” Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said in an interview.
Jimenez noted that based on initial reports, many applicants went to their local offices to apply for voter registration.
Registrants must be at least 18 years of age on or before Election Day, or on May 9, 2022.
He/she must be a resident in the Philippines for at least one year and in the place where the applicant intends to vote for at least six months on or before the day of the election.
“Despite Covid-19, the 2022 Nat’l & Local Elections — a Presidential race — will most likely still involve more than 45 million actual voters, crowding into fewer than 100,000 polling places. Even (two) years away, those are still ideal conditions for a Covid-19 superspreader scenario,” he said.
Jimenez believes that looking at the future of electoral exercises in the country is just normal.
“We need to start imagining the future of #elections, in light of the (Covid-19). It’ll be a long-haul effort, so it can’t be put off until the pre-election year and it can’t be left to purely strictly conventional planners. #pandemicdiary,” he added.
Meanwhile, Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said there are more reasons to allow marginalized sectors to vote ahead of the majority of the voters in the country.
“Which is why we should have voting by mail, and /or early voting for PWDs, IPs, elderly and pregnant women,” she said in her reply to Jimenez’s tweet
In a press statement on July 16, Senate President Vicente Sotto III announced that one of his priority bills was the Hybrid Election Act, which would allow manual voting and counting at the precinct level of the national, local and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) elections, and then automated transmission and canvassing.
“The mixed mode is aimed at ensuring credible, accurate and transparent elections,” Sotto said.
Remember: Walang sisihan