Pangilinan urges Comelec to review rules on deactivating voter records
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Francis Pangilinan said Thursday that there may be a need to review the rules of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) regarding the deactivation of voter registration records, citing the seven million registration records that were deactivated by the agency for the 2022 polls.
During a hearing of the Senate committee on electoral reforms, Comelec Deputy Executive Director for Operations Teopisto Elnas said the commission has deactivated the records of seven million voters, most of whom have failed to participate in two consecutive elections.
Pangilinan noted that the seven million individuals would have augmented the Comelec’s target of voters for 2022 if they were not delisted.
“Maybe at some point we might have to review ‘yung dalawang beses hindi bumoboto. Baka dapat taasan pa natin, tatlong beses, I don’t know,” he said.
(Maybe a some point we might have to review the rule on deactivating records of voters who have not voted twice. Maybe we have to raise the limit to three consecutive elections. I don’t know.)
“Maybe we have to review that,” he added.
According to Elnas, there were 61 million voters registered as of 2019 but this was reduced to 54 million following the deactivation.
He said only three million of the seven million former voters are expected to return to Comelec offices to reactivate their records.
So far, only 200,000 of them have applied to reactivate their data to the Comelec, according to Elnas.
The Comelec is targeting a total of four million new voter registrations until end of September. Elnas said that of this number, a total of 1.3 million have already registered while the records of 1.6 million voters from the Sangguniang Kabataan elections would be extracted and added to the Comelec database, subject to approval of the city and municipal Election Registration Boards.
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