MANILA, Philippines – Nearly two months after the May 2016 national and local polls, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) is gearing up for the next village and youth council elections on October 31.
Voter registration for the upcoming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls will start on Friday, July 15, until Saturday, July 30, said the Comelec.
Local Comelec offices will be open from 8 am to 5 pm. It will also be open on weekends and holidays. Application forms may be downloaded from the Comelec website.
For the barangay polls, the applicants for registration should be:
- At least 18 years old on or before election day
- A resident of the Philippines for at least one year
- A resident for at least 6 months of the barangay where he or she intends to vote
For the SK elections, the applicants for registration should be:
- Aged 15 to 30 years
- A resident of his or her barangay for at least 6 months by October 31
SK registrants will form the Katipunan ng Kabataan (KK) or youth federation.
Voters 18-30 years old who registered for the May 2016 polls and who will register for the October 2016 barangay polls will also be included in the Katipunan ng Kabataan.
Applications must be filed personally, as voters’ biometrics data will be captured during registration.
The Comelec added that no applications for transfer of voter registration records shall be entertained.
These rules are contained in Comelec Resolution 10148.
The SK polls were postponed thrice in the last 3 years. It was scheduled for October 2013, but was postponed to February 2015, then moved to April 2015, until it was finally rescheduled to October 2016, in sync with the next barangay polls.
This will also be the first youth council elections since Republic Act 10742 or the SK Reform Act was signed into law in January 2016. The new law has an anti-political dynasty provision, the first of its kind to be approved in the country.
RA 10742 also expanded the age bracket of the Katipunan ng Kabataan, from 15-21 years old to 15-30 years old. Elected SK officials are now 18-24 years of age, from 15-21. (READ: What’s in the new Sangguniang Kabataan?)
Meanwhile, many barangay officials have been clamoring for a term extension of 5 years, from the current 3 years. – Rappler.com