Registered voters in ARMM lower ahead of 2013 polls–ComelecBy Matikas Santos
MANILA, Philippines – The number of voters who registered in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) fell from 1.7 million in 2010 to around 1.2 million this year as the registration period ended Wednesday afternoon.
“We expected a lower figure than the 1.7 million who registered in 2010,” Commissioner Rene Sarmiento of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said Thursday in an interview with Radyo Inquirer 990AM.
“Figures are just coming in, there are around 1.1 to 1.2 million who registered,” he said.
Sarmiento added that the registration was just the first step. Registrants will still have to go through the election registration board for approval or disapproval, which could lower the total number of registrants, he added.
Some minors were seen during the registration that used make-up to look older, Sarmiento said. Election officers were quick to indicate in those minor’s papers that they were not of age so that the board will be able to decide to disapprove the registration.
Sarmiento said that there would no longer be any extension to the registration period that ended Wednesday 5 p.m.
On the issue of the incidents of violence in parts of the ARMM, Sarmiento said that these were “isolated, sporadic incidents.”
He said that the registration was “overall peaceful” in Tawi-tawi where he was overseeing the registration.