Students from the National University (NU) and Far Eastern University (FEU) prodded Commission on Elections (Comelec) to extend voter registration beyond the Sept. 30 deadline.
Citing lockdowns that impede the voter application process, NU Student Government asked the poll body to expand voting sessions and allow registrations on Saturdays and holidays.
NU students said despite Comelec reopening registrations in areas under modified enhanced community quarantine “it still would not be adequate to compensate for the number of days sacrificed for voters’ application.”
“Upon the broader sense, we assume there seem to be a substantial percentage of unregistered voters, not only because individuals wouldn’t want to get registered and vote, but rather because the alternatives they have are therefore restricted,” the students stressed.
They then appealed for a month-long extension to boost the number of potential voters for the 2022 National Elections.
Similarly, the FEU Central Student Organization said almost eight months of voter registration have been lost in some areas due to the implementation of quarantine protocols.
With the length of the time lost, FEU students said the additional hours and days of registration “are not enough to recover it..
“FEU organizations are calling on the Comelec to allow the extension of voter registration for another month. At least 13 million more can be added to the number of registered voters. Every vote is important for the election and selection of public servants,” the students said in Filipino.
FEU students also urged the public to get to know the candidates in the 2022 elections well.
“This pandemic is one of the reasons why we should be aware of what kind of leaders are supposed to lead our country, leaders who can alleviate the economic crisis brought by the pandemic. The Philippines needs leaders who will put the welfare of the people first, who will listen to the grievances of the Filipinos, and will serve only our country.”
The Comelec rejected extending the voter registration period beyond the Sept. 30 deadline, citing “technical aspects of the preparation, software preparation, and modification of counting machines.