By Gabriel Kim Leal
Photo credit: Rappler
Filipino netizens took to social media to call on the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to extend the voter registration period for the 2022 national elections, citing the agency’s lack of preparation and the difficulties that delayed the application process.
Social media users reacted with #ExtendVotersRegistration to urge the Comelec to extend the deadline of registration which will end on September 30. They emphasized the government’s failure to execute registration plans as applicants flock to poll sites and fail to observe social distancing.
- Bert Guingona (https://twitter.com/guingonabart/status/1439899009439580161?s=20)
- Erika Rabara (https://twitter.com/erikarabara/status/1439773222367490049?s=20)
Twitter user @MyRizalPH even called the statement of Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon “discriminatory,” after the latter announced that health care workers can register just by sending her a “direct message.”
Maris Racal and other personalities raised the same point and asked the government to reconsider suggestions to extend the deadline, citing reports of limited registration slots.
- Patricia Lasaten https://twitter.com/patlasaten/status/1439786467014766599?s=20
- Justin Pena (https://twitter.com/jus_pena/status/1439936867231698950?s=20)
Comelec already rejected the calls from lawmakers, youth leaders, and former poll officials to extend the deadline of voter registration, pointing out that extending the period would delay other major preparations for the upcoming elections.
Vice President Leni Robredo, however, supported the calls to give Filipinos one more month to register, saying the “extraordinary circumstances” brought by the Covid-19 pandemic demand considerations.
“But maybe… it would be possible to delay the [deadline] for another month just to make sure that everyone can register,” Robredo said in Filipino.