CNN Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Wednesday rejected calls to extend the voter registration beyond Sept. 30, but said it will make other modifications to accommodate those who want to cast their vote in the 2022 elections.
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said the poll body en banc voted to reject appeals to extend the registration period because the extension may result in more delays in the preparations for the upcoming national elections on May 9.
“The commission is concerned that if we delay the end of voter registration, it will also cause corresponding delays in all other preparatory activities especially those that depend on the finalization of the list of voters. That will have the potential to adversely affect the timelines in the preparations for the presidential elections,” the official said in a virtual media briefing.
However, the commissioners unanimously agreed to extend voting hours and open the registration even on Saturdays and holidays. The final voting hours will be released in a formal resolution.
Last week, seven senators filed a resolution urging the poll body to extend the deadline for voter registration to Oct. 30 to “prevent voter disenfranchisement brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.” Registration is on hold for areas under enhanced community quarantine and modified ECQ.
Jimenez reiterated that voter registration can only be conducted in areas under general community quarantine and modified GCQ.