The Commission on Elections (Comelec) will finalize the guidelines for the elections to be held next year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Comelec Commissioner Antonio Kho Jr., the Comelec’s ‘new normal committee’ will finalize the election 2022 guidelines this May or June.
It is certain that the designation of an “isolated polling place” in each polling center will be included so that those who experience fever can still vote.
This was tested in a plebiscite in March to divide Palawan.
“Kung mataas talaga ‘yong kaniyang temperature, dadalhin siya to what is known as the IPP – isolated polling place. Bagong sistema ito. So, lahat ng polling centers doon magkakaroon ng IPP. So bibigyan pa rin ‘yong botante ng right to vote,” said Kho.
The plan to limit the number of voters in each voting precinct and extend voting hours is still ongoing. The guidelines will include its details.
The Comelec plans to include their social media campaigns in the computation of the candidates’ broadcast expenses.
It must be declared in the respective statements of campaign contribution and expenditures.
“So ang control points namin diyan would be ‘yong expenses nila on paying these, let us say vloggers, ‘yong ating mga website,” said Kho.
New 2022 elections guidelines to be finalized in May or June: Comelec
Dr. Beverly Ho, health promotion and communications director at the Department of Health, advised the voting precinct to have good ventilation to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
More than 2,000 groups issued a unity statement to support the Comelec in the election.
The group also requested in the statement an additional P10 billion funding for “COVID-19-proofing” of the upcoming elections.
The commission targets to have 7 million new registered voters but the number of registrants is only 2.8 million as of April 30. September 30 is the deadline for voter registration.
According to Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez, the voter registration period will not be extended even if it is suspended in areas under strict community quarantine status.
“Unfortunately, mukhang hindi na siya puwedeng i-extend because the day after the close of registration [is] filing of COC (certificates of candidacy), which means we have to start preparing for election day documents na,” said Jimenez.