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Voters’ registration to continue during ASEAN summit – Comelec

/ 09:38 PM April 24, 2017
A REGISTRANT’S fingerprint appears on the screen of a computer being operated by a Commission on Elections worker in Masiu, Lanao del Sur. Comelec is using biometrics to reduce, if not eliminate, fraud in the registration of voters in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. INQUIRER MINDANAO FILE PHOTO

Voter’s registration in Masiu, Lanao del Sur, with the use of the Commission on Elections’ biometrics system. INQUIRER MINDANAO FILE PHOTO

MANILA — The remaining days of the voters’ registration period will be unaffected by the work suspension in government offices due to the Association of South East Asian Nations summit this week.

The Commission on Elections said it would push through with the voters’ registration until its end on Saturday, April 29.

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“We will still have the voters’ registration this week. We are not affected by the work suspension. At this point we don’t see the need to cancel it,” said Comelec chairperson Andres Bautista.

This means that offices of the local election officer in towns and cities will still be open on April 27 and 28 to accept applications for registration for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan polls.

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Bautista made the remarks in an interview on Monday afternoon at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran in Intramuros, Manila, where he spoke with students on the importance of registering for the polls.

It may be recalled that last week, Malacañang declared that work in government offices in the cities of Manila, Makati, and Pasay will be suspended on April 27.

Meanwhile, work in the government and private sector will be also suspended on April 28.

The work suspension was announced to make way for the 2017 ASEAN summit and related meetings, which will be held from April 26 to 29.

The Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City will be the venue of the high-profile meeting, which will be attended by heads of state.

The work suspension due to the ASEAN summit coincided with the last days of the voters’ registration for the barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (youth council) elections, which will end on April 29.

Bautista said he has discussed the matter with poll officials and that poll employees have been instructed to continue to report to their offices on those days and receive applications for voters’ registration.

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Offices of the local election officers will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. until Saturday to accept applications from prospective voters.

So far, the poll body has received 2,174,601 applications since the start of the registration period last November 7, 2016.

Meanwhile, Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting chairperson Rene Sarmiento urged Filipinos qualified to vote to sign up before the deadline on Saturday.

“One single vote is important and can spell a big difference: victory or defeat for good and able candidates,” he said.  SFM

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TAGS: Andres Bautista, Asean, Asean Summit, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, barangay elections, Commission on Elections, Election, Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting, Rene Sarmiento, Sangguniang Kabataan elections, suspension of work in government offices, village elections, voters registration, youth council elections
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