By ABS-CBN News
MANILA—The public will only have until October 30 to register to vote in the 2022 elections, as the Commission on Elections said it will no longer further extend the process.
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said this is the final extension for voter registration, after some had begged the election body to consider going beyond the deadline.
"Sad to say, this is the final extension that I think we can afford," Jimenez told ANC Wednesday.
"In this case, we made the decision to eat up whatever slack we might have had before in order to accommodate this extension. Unfortunately, we can't do more than that. We can't give more than October 30th. Sagad na tayo talaga (We're at our limit)."
Registration will be suspended on between October 1 and 8) to give way for the filing of certificates of candidacy by 2022 hopefuls.
Meanwhile, the extension of the registration for overseas voters will be from October 1 to 14.
The Comelec's decision to extend the process came as both the Senate and House passed bills compelling it to lengthen the registration period, as people have been lining up at Comelec offices predawn to be accommodated.
It had been insistent to end voter registration on Sept. 30, fearing a domino effect of delays in other election-related activities, such as the loading of data to vote-counting machines in December and the printing of ballots in January.
The Comelec said it has already reached its target number of voters for 2022, which stands at more than 62 million as of latest figures.
Jimenez also said the extension of voter registration will definitely affect the election calendar, but he assured matters will be ironed out in time.
"It certainly will affect the calendar, right, in the sense that we have lesser time to do things that we're supposed to have some sort of slack to do them in. There would be less time to deal with unforeseen circumstances, so it will sort of ratchet up the pressure to get everything done the right way, at the first try," he said.
"But thankfully, we still have enough slack that we won't be really delaying too many things."