MANILA, Philippines – The voter turnout for the 2022 elections reached a record-high, data from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) showed.
A tally of 172 out of 173 certificates of canvass indicated that 55.5 million Filipinos exercised their right to suffrage, or around 82.6% of the 67.4 million registered voters.
The highest voter turnout since the Philippines shifted to automated polls in 2010 was recorded in 2016, when 81.95% of registered voters participated in the elections.
The 55.5 million tally of the Comelec, which sits as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC), accounts for 83% of 66.8 million, which is the number of eligible voters covered by the places that the NBOC already included in its official count.
The number will still increase, as the votes from Lanao del Sur have yet to be officially tallied. Some precincts there are set to hold a special election on May 24 after a failure of polls on May 9.
On Wednesday, May 18, Comelec Chairman Saidamen Pangarungan touted the record turnout for this year’s vote.
“The glory does not belong to the winners of the elections alone. It also belongs to the voters who stood patiently in line to cast their votes,” Pangarungan said.
“I am proud to say that the Comelec has successfully defended the sovereign right of the people to the democratic process of elections,” he added.
The May 9 vote was the first nationwide electoral exercise to be conducted against the backdrop of a pandemic.
It resulted in a landslide victory for dictator’s son Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who received 31 million votes to defeat nine other presidential aspirants including his closest rival, Vice President Leni Robredo, who secured 14 million votes.
Reports of automated election glitches marred the conduct of the polls, with some 915 vote-counting machines classified as defective and needing to be replaced. This, however, only accounts for less than a percent of the total number of VCMs.
The Comelec has, time and again, disputed allegations of automated election rigging.
The match rate of pre-transmission paper election returns with ERs sent electronically is also at 98%, according to watchdog Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting.
A 45-day random manual audit of ballots is also underway to determine whether the machines read the votes on the ballots correctly. – Rappler.com