With the Commission on Elections (Comelec) recording only 1.3 million out of its target of four million new voters for the 2022 elections, the poll body is now considering adjusting the voter registration schedule to cover more hours and include more days in the week.
According to Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez, they’re currently considering extending voter registration for three hours on a daily basis. For people who are unable to register due to work obligations, the poll body is also thinking of adding Fridays and weekends to the schedule.
As of writing, Comelec offices are open for voter registration from Mondays to Thursdays, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Last week, the commission set up express lanes to ensure that COVID-19 frontliners are able to participate in voter registration.
Despite lagging behind its target, the Comelec noted that an extension of the registration deadline isn’t an option—as filing of certificates of candidacy begins in October. Instead, Jimenez stressed the importance of registering to vote for the upcoming election.
“For the first time I think in a very long time, we are seeing the actual effect of the election day choices we made,” he noted. “The quality of governance we receive now is a direct consequence of our election day choices in elections past.”[READ: Will the next elections reveal the turning tide of political opinions?]
“It is worth your time to take the reins of responsibility and power in your own hands and not leave it in the hands of others. In order to do that, you have to register and make your voice heard when we have elections in 2022,” Jimenez added.