Comelec looks to secure adequate power supply for May 2022 polls

Published March 31, 2022, 5:00 PM

by Dhel Nazario

So far, Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner George Irwin Garcia said that the power outlook for the upcoming May 2022 appears to be good.

Public school teachers undergo training for the May 2022 elections. (ALI VICOY/ MANILA BULLETIN)

However, in a press briefing on Thursday, March 31, Garcia stressed that he would want an assurance from the Department of Energy (DOE) itself that the power outlook would be sufficient for the upcoming national elections.

Garcia stated that the DOE has made a commitment to the poll body yet he wants it to be presented to them so that they may have a look at the power situation.

He said that they are in constant communication with the DOE and the power sector group. Garcia said that Comelec Deputy Director for Operations Teofisto Elnas provides a weekly report to the en banc regarding the power outlook.

“So far yung mga (the various) electric cooperatives, maganda rin yung mga power output nila (they have good power outputs). Sufficient up to end May even,” he said.

Garcia, stated however, that this is not enough and that should still provide a day-to-day update of the power situation. Fuel prices were also mentioned as the Comelec would like to know if it has a correlation with the power situation.

“We wanted to make an indirect or direct connection. We wanted an assurance that indeed medyo maganda-ganda yung ating power situation (that our power situation will be good),” he said.

Garcia also mentioned that he will be meeting with DOE Undersecretary Wimpy Fuentebella to get an assurance that there will be no problems in the upcoming polls. On the other hand, Garcia assured that vote counting machines (VCMs) have backup batteries that can last up to 18 hours should there be an outage.