Ongoing registration of voters for the coming barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections was significantly low in the National Capital Region (NCR or Metro Manila), according to the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Comelec spokesman James Jimenez on Wednesday disclosed that the turnout was relatively low than expected, particularly during the first three days of the registration.

According to a report submitted by Comelec NCR Director Jubil Surmieda, the turnout in the whole of Metro Manila during the first day was only 10,047 registrants, 9,808 on the second day and 13,648 on the third day.

The figures included registrants for the SK elections aged 15-30 and barangay elections aged 18 and above.

The 15-day registration period started July 15.

Jimenez attributed the low turnout to what he described as “last minute” habit of Filipinos.

“It’s part of the last-minute attitude of Filipinos. They would troop to registration centers on the last minute,” he said.

“Our message to the public: Register early to avoid long lines at registration centers in the final days of the registration period,” said Jimenez.

He added that Comelec offices are open even on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays to accommodate the broadest number of registrants.