Hontiveros rues non-extension of voter registration, asks first-timers to be ready


SEN. Risa Hontiveros lamented on Tuesday the Commission on Elections’ decision not to extend the voter registration beyond September 30, despite pleas from many sectors, as the two-week lockdowns in many populous areas was seen to take away many hours for what could have been the registration.

“It is sad that the plea to extend voter registration was not granted, even at least for those areas under enhanced community quarantine.  Many hours for registration will be lost for potential first-time voters,” the senator said in a statement.

“Nevertheless, I welcome Comelec’s proposal to provide longer registration hours, possibly even adding Sundays to their schedule, to somehow make up for lost time,” she added.

She reiterated her appeal to first- time voters to, while still under ECQ, “pre-register online so that the process will be faster once lining up at Comelec offices is allowed again.  As for the first-time voters in areas where voter registration is not suspended, please line up and register as soon as possible. Don’t pass up the chance to participate in the 2022 elections.”

Besides Hontiveros, Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon, and Senators Joel Villanueva and Nancy Binay had asked Comelec to extend the registration period for first-time voters and those who were deactivated for failure to vote in the last two elections.

However, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said the poll body’s schedule for preparations for the 2022 polls is already squeezed tight as it is, and the Comelec will next have to tackle the scheduled filing of certificates of candidacy by 2022 aspirants by early October.    

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