Anticipating three million new voters for the 2016 polls, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Friday urged the public to register early starting on May 6.
In a news conference on Friday, Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said local Comelec offices will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the registration period. Late registrants will no longer be entertained.
“Do not be late for I will go out and close the door at 5 p.m.,” Brillantes said.
Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said the registration process would last about 17 months.
“Voters have 17 months to register so they should not forget to do so. If they do, the same thing might happen in previous polls and things will be difficult if people come [to register]at the last minute,” Jimenez added.
Brillantes called the attention of the 9.6 million registered voters to have their biometrics registered so that they can participate in the 2016 elections.
Republic Act 10367 (An Act Providing for Mandatory Biometrics Voter Registration), signed by President Benigno Aquino 3rd on February 15, 2013, requires all voters to undergo biometrics registration with the Comelec to obtain their digital photograph, fingerprints and signature. The law was enacted to curb double registration and multiple voting.
“Under the law, those who fail to register from May 6 to October 2014 will be delisted and deactivated in the voters’ list,” Brillantes warned.
The poll body is expecting from 2.5 million to 3 million new voters for 2016, The number of registered voters who have transferred from one registration precinct to another has also increased.
“If you are going to transfer, do it during the early months of 2014 or in the first half of 2015,” Brillantes said.