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Bacolod City, Philippines Saturday, July 16, 2016
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Guanzon: Register to vote,
every voice must be heard

Commissioner Rowena Guanzon of the Commission on Elections is encouraging all Filipinos, especially young people, to register to vote.

“The barangay and SK elections are very important for our communities. I hope more women will run for office, and as we call for social inclusiveness, every voice should be represented , including LGBTs, PWDs and Indigenous people,” she said yesterday.

About 447 voters in Bacolod City registered with the Comelec on the first day of registration in preparation for the synchronized Sangguniang Kabataan and barangay elections on October 31.

Bacolod Election Officer Mavil Majarucon-Sia yesterday said the voter's registration is from July 15 to 30 and there will be no extension.

Out of the 447 registrants, who queued at the Comelec-Bacolod Office as early as 6:30 a.m. yesterday, 179 registered for the Katipunan ng Kabataan and 268 for the barangay elections, she said.

Majarucon-Sia said that, in the past, only those aged 18 years old and above were required to have their biometric data captured. But this time, the SK members are required to undergo biometric capturing so they have to pass through the data capturing machine of the Comelec.

However, Comelec-Bacolod has only three DCM's and each machine can only accommodate about 200 registrants a day, or a maximum of 600 to 650 a day. So if they cannot be accommodated right away, they can return the next day, she said.

The Comelec will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. including Saturdays, Sunday and holidays, she added.

But during the registration they cannot entertain transfers within or transfer outside, but only new registration, reactivation and correction. Those without biometrics can have their names reactivated, she added.

Majarucon-Sia said they will release the application form once the applicants comply with the requirements.

Registrants, who are aged 15 to 19 years old, are required to bring their original birth certificates aside from the photocopy they are required to provide the Comelec so their age could be determined, she said.

Majarucon-Sia said they need to authenticate the photocopy provided them because they have previous experiences where the date of birth is being tampered. If they have no valid ID they can present somebody who can guarantee that he or she is a resident of a certain barangay, she said.

Those who are 15 years old and above are required to bring a valid ID with their address indicated on it to establish that they are residents of Bacolod, she added.

Earlier, Majarucon-Sia said those who can register for the SK election are those aged 15 to 30 years old and for the barangay election, 18 years old and above.

Based on Republic Act 10742 or the Sangguniang Kabataan Reform Act of 2015, those aged 15 to 30 years old can vote during the Katipunan ng Kabataan election and those who can run for SK should be between 18 to 24 years old.

Candidates for the SK cannot run if they have relatives who are incumbent national or local officials based on RA 10742.

Based on the law, candidates for the SK election must not be related within the second civil degree of consanguinity or affinity to any elected national or local official.*CGS




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