More than 4M register to vote, exceeding Comelec target
MANILA, Philippines – More than 4 million Filipinos applied to become voters during the last registration period, exceeding the target set by the Commission on Elections (Comelec), poll body spokesman James Jimenez said on Tuesday, October 8.
Data from the Comelec Election and Barangay Affairs Department (EBAD) showed a total of 4,097,003 applications were received nationwide from August 1 to September 30, 2019.
Applications from Filipinos 18 years old and above numbered 3,082,396, while applications from those 15 to 17 years old (to vote for Sangguniang Kabataan positions) was at 1,014,607. There were also more female registrants than males, the Comelec said.
The Comelec initially aimed to attract some two million Filipinos 18 years old and above and about one million voters 15-17 years old to register as voters this year.
“A turnout this high far exceeds the projected number of new registered voters for the year 2020.... For the regular applicants (18 years old and over), the nationwide average is 152% more than what was statistically expected,” Jimenez said, adding that the trend was true for 16 regions in the country.
The latest registration period was done in line with the 2020 barangay and SK elections, which Congress now seeks to suspend following the call of President Rodrigo Duterte to do so in his 4th State of the Nation Address.
If the 2020 barangay and SK elections are postponed, the Comelec said it would announce a new period of voter registration in line with the system of continuing registration mandated by law.
The Senate has so far passed on 3rd reading its proposal to suspend local elections to December 2022. A similar measure in the House of Representatives has yet to hurdle 3rd and final reading. – Rappler.com