Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who went back to the Philippines during the COVID-19 pandemic must transfer their registration records to be able to vote in the 2022 elections.
The Commission on Elections issued this reminder as the September 30 deadline for voter registration nears.
“Iyong mga repatriated overseas voters eh sorry po, kailangan silang mag-transfer of registration para makaboto sa Pilipinas,” Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said during a briefing organized by Vera Files on Thursday, May 20.
(Overseas voters who were repatriated need to transfer their registration records to be able to vote in the Philippines.)
“A lot of them are not doing it yet and they only have so much time left, and that would be an issue,” Jimenez added.
The Department of Foreign Affairs repatriated 327,511 migrant Filipinos in 2020 for pandemic-related reasons.
From September 2020 to May 2021, the Comelec received 10,326 applications for transfer from overseas absentee voters (OAV).
Jimenez acknowledged that displacements and relocations caused by the health crisis are some of the poll body’s areas of concern for the 2022 national elections.
“There is a lot of concern about the displaced, people who will go to some place because they think that they can vote there but they cannot,” he said.
From September 2020 to May 2021, over 700,000 people have already filed their transfer of voter registration applications, according to data from the Comelec.
Jimenez had said in April that people should transfer their registration records “if migration or travel is an issue.”
The Comelec expects to receive a total of 5.5 million voter applications, both from new registrants and reactivated voters, before the deadline ends on September 30, 2021. – Rappler.com