The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Friday announced that it would suspend the voter registration in the National Capital Region during the implementation of enhanced community quarantine from August 6 to 20.
This was confirmed by Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez as the poll body acknowledged that the reimposition of the strictest quarantine classification in the country will affect the voter registration for Eleksyon 2022.
“The return of NCR to a state of ECQ will undoubtedly have an impact on voter registration numbers,” Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said in a statement.
The poll body, however, vowed to continuously seek more Filipinos to register for the upcoming 2022 national and local elections once the government lifts the quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila.
“Needless to say, the Comelec strives continuously to register more eligible citizens, but at this perilous juncture, the top priority should be the safety and health of the electorate,” Jimenez said.
“When the appropriate authorities deem it safe to lift these current restrictions, the Comelec will promptly resume its services to the public. Until then, however, the Comelec will not shirk its role - however small that might be - in assuring the success of the country’s pandemic response,” he added.
Moreover, Jimenez emphasized that the commission was able to achieve its target voters for the 2022 polls.
“It bears remembering that the Comelec has, in fact, already exceeded expectations - and not just its own - for voter registration during a pandemic. More than 4 million newly eligible voters are already included in the voter rolls, and we have already blown past earlier and lower projections of the total number of voters registered for the 2022 National and Local Elections,” Jimenez said.
In an interview on The Howie Severino’s Podcast last week, Jimenez disclosed that the number of brand new registrants has breached 4.3 million.
According to Jimenez, brand new registrants refer to individuals who just turned 18.
The Comelec will be closing its voter registration period on September 30, 2021.
As of June 22, the poll body said there are at least 60 million voters registered for the 2022 national and local elections.
Earlier in the day, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque announced that Metro Manila will be placed under the strictest enhanced community quarantine classification from August 6 to 20 in light of the threat posed by the Delta coronavirus variant.
“Mapait na desisyon ito pero ito ay para sa kabutihan ng lahat [This is a painful decision but it is for the good of the people],” Roque said at a press briefing. — RSJ/NB, GMA News