OFW VOTERS NEARING 1 MILLION / ABSENTEE VOTER REGISTRATION BY OCT 30

MANILA, OCTOBER 29,
2012 (PHILSTAR) By Mayen Jaymalin The Commission on Elections (Comelec) yesterday reported that the number of overseas absentee voting (OAV) registrants has doubled to almost a million.

Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes said the number of OAV registrants rose from half a million during the last elections to 915,000 for the 2013 polls.

Brillantes said the number is still short of their one million target, but the poll body would no longer extend the voter registration despite the request of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

“The DFA is requesting for a month extension and we denied it already,” said Brillantes.

With a vote of 4-2, the Comelec ruled to deny the DFA’s request last Tuesday, he added.

“Commissioner (Lucenito) Tagle and I voted in favor of the granting of the extension only because the request came from a certain Usec. Brillantes of the DFA so we voted for him but we still lost,” Brillantes said in jest.

FROM GULF NEWS

OFW voters for 2013 polls near one million mark By Manolo B. Jara October 22, 2012

MANILA: The number of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who registered to vote in the May 2013 elections has neared the one million mark, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

So far, the DFA said a total of 589,830 qualified OFWs enrolled in the country’s foreign diplomatic outposts to enable them to vote in the midterm 2013 polls less than eight months away.

In the 2012 presidential elections won overwhelmingly by then opposition senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, the DFA recorded 235,950, bringing to 919,498 the total number of OFW registrants, the DFA explained.

Both the DFA and the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said at the rate the OFWs were registering, the target of one million expatriate Filipino voters would be achieved before the deadline for their registration is to expire on Oct.30.

The Comelec has designated the foreign office as the lead agency in the registration of the estimated nine million OFWs through its diplomatic outposts like embassies and consulates.

Officials have credited the increase in the number of OFW voters this year to the active participation of embassy and consulate staffers as well as representatives of non-government organisations and groups who encouraged them to go out and register.

However, the Comelec warned there would be no extension when the deadline is to end on Oct.30.

At stake in the 2013 midterm elections are 12 senators who are to be elected nationally as well as those of provincial and local positions such as congressmen, governors, mayors and party-list group nominees.

Under the Philippine party-list system, the nominees elected to the House of Representatives are to promote and protect the interests of the country’s under-represented sectors especially OFWs, farmers, fishermen, vendors and retirees like teachers, soldiers and policemen.

However, the Comelec clarified that OFWs qualified to participate in the May 2013 polls are to vote only for candidates for senator and party-list representatives.

The DFA and the Comelec have launched a campaign called “Boto Nyo, Kinabukasan Namin” (Your Vote, Our Future) to encourage more OFWs to cast their ballots in the 2013 polls.

Press Release No. 77-2012 / 15 May 2012

Embassy Reminds Filipinos To Register As Overseas Absentee Voters

The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh reiterates its invitation to all Filipinos in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to register as Overseas Absentee Voters (OAV). The National Elections for Senators and party-list representatives shall be on 13 May 2013 - exactly a year from today.

If you are any of the following, you are required to register as an Overseas Absentee Voter

. Those who will turn 18 years old by 13 May 2013

2. Those who have never registered as a voter since birth

3. Those who have registered as a voter in the Philippines but plan to cast their votes in Saudi Arabia

4. Those who have previously registered as OAV but failed to vote during the last two consecutive National Elections in 2007 and 2010

5. Those who have previously registered as OAV in other countries or regions in Saudi Arabia and have since transferred to Riyadh or nearby areas

The Embassy wishes to invite all Filipinos in Riyadh and nearby regions to register as Overseas Absentee Voters during the Embassy’s field OAV registration at the following venues:

* Al Danah International School (ADIS), Suleimaniah District, Riyadh

18 May 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* International Philippine School in Riyadh (IPSR), Olaya District, Riyadh

25 May 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* Al Taj International School, Suleimaniah District, Riyadh

08 June 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* Palm Crest International School, Suleimaniah District, Riyadh

22 June 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* Elite International School, Suleimaniah District, Riyadh

29 June 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* Philippine International School in Buraidah (PISB), Buraidah, Al Qassim

05 to 06 July 2012, Thursday and Friday from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* Riyadh International School, Suleimaniah District, Riyadh

20 July 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

* International Philippine School in Riyadh (IPSR), Olaya District, Riyadh

27 July 2012, Friday, from 8:00AM to 5:00PM

OAV Registration is also ongoing at the Philippine Embassy Lobby, Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh from Saturdays through Wednesdays from 8:00am to 5:00pm and on Thurdays from 8:00am to 12:00nn.

All OAV registrants are encouraged to bring their Philippine passports (or a photocopy), iqama, or other identification cards showing their full name.

The deadline for OAV registration is on 31 October 2012. END.

OFWs want online voting in all countries

House of Representatives has approved on third and final reading the proposed amendments of the OAV By Barbara Mae Dacanay, Bureau Chief Published: 14:45 October 15, 2012

Manila: Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) called on Congress to pass a bill allowing online voting in all countries that host OFWs, a local paper said.

Congress should amend and improve the Overseas Absentee Voting (OAV) law, which was passed and enacted in 2003, “to make it a more effective tool for political empowerment of overseas Filipinos”, Ellene Sana, Center for Migrant Advocacy (CMA) executive director, told the Star.

The House of Representatives has approved on third and final reading the proposed amendments of the OAV. The Senate has not yet passed its own version of the OAV, Sana said.

The proposed bill has authorised the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to explore online voting on top of postal voting, and personal appearance in designated voting centres abroad.

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The proposed call urged the abolition of OAV’s requirement that Filipino immigrants and permanent residents must execute an affidavit of intent to return and establish permanent physical residence in the Philippines.

The Senate should immediately pass the proposed amendments on OAV, so that all OFWs can exercise their right to vote, Sana said.

There are about 10 million OFWs abroad. They remitted about $20 billion (Dh73.44 billion) to relatives in the Philippines last year.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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