By Lizbeth Ann Abella | Philippine News Agency
TACLOBAN CITY – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Eastern Visayas is calling on qualified voters to register with just a few days left before the Sept. 30, 2021 deadline.
Comelec Eastern Visayas assistant regional director Felicisimo Embalsado said that while there is no extension yet for voter's registration, they have to follow a calendar of activities for the 2022 elections under Comelec Resolution No. 10695. The Senate and several local government units which experienced extended lockdowns due to coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) restrictions have called for the extension.
With less than a week before the month ends, new voters are flocking to election offices this week to beat the deadline.
"I am calling those who are qualified to register or those who will turn 18 years old on or before the day of the elections on May 9, 2022 so that you can participate in the democratic processe of choosing our national and local leaders,”
Embalsado said in a statement on Wednesday.
For the entire Eastern Visayas, a total of 262,551 applications have been received by the Comelec offices from January 1 to September 18, 2021.
Of this number, 118, 820 are applications for new registration or those who just turned 18.
In Tacloban City alone, an average of 150 to 200 registrants are being accommodated daily since the start of September, above the daily average of 100 voters.
These applications are still subject to the Election Registration Board (ERB) hearing.
Registration at the Comelec offices is open from Mondays to Fridays starting at 8 a.m. until 7 p.m., including holidays.
Aside from enlisting new voters, the Comelec also handles the transfer of voter records to another area; transfer of voter records within the same city or municipality; reactivation of voter records; change of name or correction of entries; a combination of transfer, reactivation, or correction of record; inclusion of record in the book of voters; reinstatement of name in the list of voters; and transfer of voter record from the overseas absentee voting list.
To encourage the registrants, election offices conduct satellite registrations every Saturday in towns and cities classified as low-risk areas for coronavirus.
Considered as new voters are those turning 18 on or before Election Day on May 9, 2022, who is a resident in the Philippines for at least a year and in the place where he or she intends to vote for at least six months on or before Election Day.
The region has an estimated 198,000 first-time voters. (PNA)