Comelec suspends overseas voters' registration in 'hotspots'
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Commission on Elections approved on Tuesday, August 5, the request of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to suspend the overseas voters' registration in "hotspots" for security reasons.
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez posted the announcement on his Twitter account.
FYI: COMELEC has approved the recommendation of the DFA to suspend voter registration in Libya, Syria, Iraq, the Gaza Strip and the Ukraine.— James Jimenez (@jabjimenez) August 5, 2014
In a statement on Monday, August 4, the DFA said it has recommended the “immediate suspension” of overseas' voters' registration in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, and the Gaza Strip.
The DFA cited the “deteriorating security situation in these areas,” which the department has placed under crisis alert levels.
Libya, for one, is under alert level 4, which entails mandatory repatriation. (READ: Filipinos in Libya: We can survive war, not joblessness)
The DFA, however, said it is still confident that a million new overseas voters will register for the 2016 presidential elections.
It noted that as early as June, overseas voters' registration has breached the one-million mark for the first time in the 11 years that the Philippines allowed overseas voting.
“The challenge for overseas voters registration is to maintain the momentum by keeping the overseas Filipinos interested and engaged in this democratic process” said Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario.
Overseas voters' registration runs from May 6, 2014 to October 31, 2015. – Rappler.com