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NAMFREL prepares for poll watching duties

The National Citizens’ Movement for Free Elections (NAMFREL) on Wednesday said it is ready to help ensure clean and inclusive midterm elections in May 2019.

The statement was issued even as the election-monitoring body was still waiting for the Commission on Elections (Comelec) En Banc has yet to approve their accreditation as a citizen’s arm.

The Church-based poll watchdog convened leaders of its regional and NCR chapters as well as various social action groups in Makati City on Wednesday.

The midterm elections are set on May 13 with more than 61 million registered voters expected to flock to their respective precincts.

NAMFREL Secretary General Eric Alvia discussed their main responsibilities, as well as an updated schedule of activities to be completed in time for the polls.



Representatives from the Comelec's Education and Information Department (EID) discussed the parts and functions of the vote counting machines (VCM) and were briefed on technical and instructional details essential for voters and watchers on election day.

NAMFREL chapter leaders also raised individual concerns on the automated election system, which Mark Ramirez of Comelec's information department said he would take up with the poll body's officials.



NAMFREL, which has monitored and observed elections for decades, acknowledges the ongoing efforts of Comelec and other agencies to promote transparency. Alvia said they can “do more.”

“Do more in terms of putting into reality their statements,” he said. “(Dapat) transparent because it concerns the public good, it concerns the common good, it concerns government, state and public welfare.” — BAP, GMA News