Voters will have more time to cast their vote during the May 9, 2022 local and national polls.
On Friday, Feb. 26, Commission on Elections (Comelec) Spokesperson James Jimenez said they were planning to extend the voting hours in the next polls amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“We will extend voting hours because one of the reasons why people are clustered is because voting only takes a few hours. Maybe we will do 12 hours from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.” he said in a radio interview.
Jimenez said they are also mulling to hold the voting in open spaces like gyms or covered courts as some of the polling precincts are cramped.
The number of voters per polling precinct will also be reduced from 1,000 to 600, he said.
Even the political watchers or observers will also be limited.
Jimenez said the teachers serving during the polls will be provided with protective equipment.
Voter assistance desks, he said, will also be set-up to help voters find their assigned polling precinct.
“We will come out with a precinct finder at the same time we will also have voters assistance desk. We have accredited citizens arm who will focus on this,” he said.
On Feb. 13, the Comelec released the Calendar of Activities for next year’s polls.
In Resolution No. 10695, the poll body set the filing of Certificate of Candidacy (COC) for all elective positions is from October 1, 2021 to October 8, 2021, including Saturday and Sunday.
The Election Period commences from Jan. 9, 2022 to June 8, 2022.
The campaign period for candidates in national positions is from Feb. 8, 2022 to May 7, 2022 while for candidates in local elective positions campaigning begins on March 25, 2022 and ends on May 7, 2022.