Early Voting for 2022 Elections: Early voting for the upcoming 2022 elections may be made possible as Congress is urged to make amendments, in the assumption that the pandemic might still be ongoing by next year. In an article by GMA News Online, an official from the Commission on Elections called on Congress to amend the local absentee law or pass a measure to allow vulnerable groups to vote ahead of time.
“Kung puwede nilang i-amend ‘yan para ‘yung mga PWD, elderly, mga pregnant women, mga indigenous people, people who are in jail can vote early. Puwedeng i-amend ‘yan, mabilis lang ‘yung amendment,” states Comelec Commissioner Rowena Ganzon, in an interview with Dobol B sa News. Read more: Congress urged to pass early voting law for 2022 polls, an article by GMA News Online.
The ‘Early Voting Act’ can also reduce the volume of voters gathering in precincts. Thus, minimizing a possible COVID-19 outbreak. Voters include those belonging to vulnerable sectors to minimize risk.
“Let’s say 61 million [ang voting population]. Dapat one-fourth man lang niyan vulnerable groups ay magaan-gaan na ang trabaho, at ‘yung mga tao makakaboto talaga,” she adds.
Guanzon also made comments regarding ‘postal voting’.
“Yung voting by mail, medyo delikado ‘yun e. Hindi ako sure. Although I spoke with Chairman [Norman] Fulgencio of PHLPost, kaya naman daw nila with their new infrastructure na machines. Pero hindi ako [pabor] doon sa voting by mail, kasi alam mo naman ang mga Pilipino masyadong enterprising, baka maharang ang mga balota,” Guanzon remarks.
She also shares that the agency is adding more vote-counting machines to manage the flow of people.
“Ang problem ngayon kapag may pandemic, social distancing, medyo slow motion ang mga tao. So talagang dadagdagan natin ang mga vote counting machines at dagdagan din natin ang presinto. [Pero] ang solusyon talaga diyan, early voting ng vulnerable sectors. Kailangan talaga ang Kongreso, sana ipasa nila ‘yung batas tsaka iakyat kay Presidente, certify as urgent, para mapasa na ‘yan this year, let’s say within six months,” she concludes.