In a media briefing, SC spokesman Theodore Te said the petition was denied for lack of merit and that temporary restraining order issued by the high court last December 1 has now been ordered "dissolved."
In its ruling, the high court distinguished between the concept of "qualification" and "registration" in the elections, saying the latter is merely a means with which a person's qualifications to vote are determined.
"Unless it is shown that a registration requirement rises to the level of a literacy, property or other substantive requirement as contemplated by the framers of the Constitution... the same cannot be struck down as unconstitutional, as in this case," ruled the SC.
The SC said the policy of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) passed the "strict scrutiny" test, adding the objective of cleansing the national voter registry by eliminating electoral fraud is reflective of the will of the electorate and constitutes a compelling state interest.The SC stressed that the policy is actually already considered the "least restrictive means" to update the registration for those already registered under Republic Act 8189 through technology.
"The lifting of the TRO will enable us to proceed with the finalization of the list of voters and project of precincts," Bauitsta said.
He said the Comelec is "very plesed that the SC saw it our way."
The poll chief earlier said that the May 9, 2016 election day might be postponed if the SC fails to immediately lift the TRO on its "no bio, no boto" policy.
Following the Supreme Court's ruling, Malacañang said it is now up to Comelec to ensure that preparations for the conduct of the 2016 national elections are in accordance with the timetable.
"We leave it to the Comelec's best judgment, as an independent constitutional body, on how to proceed in the light of the Supreme Court ruling," said Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. in a statement.
Malacañang earlier rejected the possibility of postponing the elections, citing the constitutional requirement of holding the polls on the second Monday of May. —with Kathrina Charmaine Alvarez/KBK, GMA News