ARMM voters’ surge alarms Comelec


THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) expressed alarm over the dramatic increase in the number of new registered voters in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), a known hotbed of electoral fraud.

Comelec Chairman Juan Andres Bautista on Friday said he had the matter investigated by the ARMM Comelec regional director, adding that he expects to receive the report anytime soon.

“I already send a memo addressed to the regional director. I am asking him to explain why there was a very big increase in the number of registered voters in the ARMM compared to the other regions,” Bautista told The Manila Times.

He said registered voters in the ARMM increased by almost 500,000 new voters after the registration in November 2015.

ARMM is composed of the provinces of Basilan (except Isabela City), Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.

Bautista said the Comelec-ARMM director texted him earlier that there was also an increase during the barangay elections in 2013 from 1.4 million to 1.6 million.

The increase was attributed by the regional director to longer registration period in the runup to the 2016 elections which lasted 17 months, compared to the two-week registration in the previous elections.

Voters registration for the 2016 elections in the ARMM has increased from 2.349 million to 54.363 million from 52.014 registered voters in 2013, or a 26.87 percent jump, the biggest among the 16 regions in the country.

Based on the Comelec’s profile of registered voters by region, ARMM has a total of 1,863,230 voters in 2016 as compared to 1,468,584 in 2013 or an increase of 394,646.

Interestingly, records also showed that during the 2010 elections there were a total of 1,882,338 registered voters in the ARMM, much bigger than 2013 and 2016.

According to the 2010 figures of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the ARMM has a total population of 3,256,140.

“Alarming ‘to. Kailangan bantayan (This is alarming. It should be closely watched.),” Bautista stressed.

He said he wanted a formal report explaining in detail how the increase in 2016 voters registration came to be.

It may be recalled that the “Hello Garci” scandal, which allegedly padded the votes of former president and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo against the late action star Fernando Poe Jr., was reportedly done in Mindanao.

The “Hello Garci” controversy broke out in 2005 after audiotapes of an alleged conversation between Arroyo and former Comelec official Virgilio Garcillano surfaced.


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  1. ernie del rosario on

    Hay Chairman Bautista ! Bakit di mo gamitin yung AFIS cleansing system na nabili pa ng Comelec nung Sept 2009 for 1.6 billion. Mahuhuling mabilis ang multiple registrants noon. Tapos tingnan din visually (using a small percentage samples muna expandable depending on the extent of the daya initially revealed) of the pictures of the new registrants kung mukhang 18 years old above nga. These were done long before and 7.5% bloat was detected by the AFIS. Plus tens of thousands of obviously minor-looking (9, 10, 11 years old) registrants were discovered thru visual scrutiny and which were weeded out. Now, what happened to the biding for the upgrade of the AFIS system that is supposed to cleanse the voters’ database of the new 15 million new registrants and the some 60 million “old” ones. Nag focus yata kayo sa pagtatanggal nung 2 to 3 million na walang bio na dating botatnte na. What is the real status on this ? The bid was supposed to have been won and awarded na but the contract hangs daw until now (pls clarify). The cleansing was supposed to have a deadline of of March 31. Today is March 5 na. 26 days to go to cleanse 75 million voters’ records via fingerprint matching . Nasimulan na ba ? You will need more than a thousand of matching servers to finish. Nariyan na ba yung servers ? May addl lugar na bang paglalagyan ng ganito karaming server sa Comelec datacenter na na site-prep na ? May addl aircon at power supply na ba ? Ano na status nito ? As impt ito as the batikos-punong PCOS for you need to finish cleansing befoe you can print the EDCVL. Otherwsie marumi na naman ang EDCVL with fktying voters. Mas nakakatakot ito than the vote buying kuno that you said the VVPAT will encourage. Haaaaaaaaaayyyyyyy !