‘Sign na ito’: Filipinos urged to register as voters after Comelec extension

September 29, 2021 - 4:16 PM
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Individuals queue for voter registration outside the Comelec office in Quezon City on Sept. 6, 2021. (The STAR/Boy Santos)

The Commission on Elections finally approved the extension of voter registration   following public clamor for it.

Poll commissioner Rowena Guanzon and spokesperson James Jimenez confirmed this on Twitter on September 29, a day before the voter registration period was supposed to close.

They advised the public that the extension was unanimously approved to take place from October 11 to 30 after the period of filing of certificates of candidacy for the 2022 national elections.

The filing of COCs is set on October 1 to 8.

Voter applicants can go to registration sites and local poll offices from Mondays to Fridays at 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The only Saturday they will accept applicants is on the last day, October 30.

Jimenez also noted that all registration services are available during this period.

For overseas voters, he said that the extension was set for two weeks only, from October 1 to 14.

“Note that for overseas voting, the filing of COCs is not an issue, thus the extension starts immediately,” Jimenez said.

Guanzon earlier pointed out that she was the only poll commissioner in favor to extend the voter registration when Comelec en banc started voting last month.

It was the Senate that passed the resolution to extend the period until October 30.

“Last month @COMELEC En Banc voted on the extension of registration. I was the only one in favor. Now the @senatePH voted unanimously to pass a Bill to extend registration to October 30,” she said.

Both chambers of the Congress previously filed bills to delay the registration period due to concerns that millions of Filipinos might not make it due to the shifting quarantine statuses in the past months.

Some personalities including Tricia Robredo and TikTok content creator Sassa Gurl even joined in the call for the extension through social media posts.

Comelec had previously stood its ground to stick to their schedules, citing operational concerns that might also be affected.

This included the loading of data to voting machines and printing of ballots.

Due to this insistence, Comelec offices and other registration sites have reportedly grappled with the influx of Filipinos who wished to register to vote ahead the looming previous deadline.

Following the extension, some called on their Fellow Filipinos to register as voters for the 2022 national elections.

“Sign na ito para magparegister ka!” one Twitter user said.

“Magparehistro na kayo. Huwag antayin ang deadline na naman,” another online user wrote.

So far, there are over 62 million registered voters, meeting Comelec’s target number of voters for 2022.