Overseas Filipinos urged to vote

comelec_logo_oav-300x138From April 13, 2019 until May 13, 2019, overseas Filipinos who are registered voters may cast their votes under the overseas absentee voting system.

Data from the Commission on Elections Office for Overseas Voting (COMELEC-OFOV) state that there are 1,822,173 registered Filipino voters worldwide.

Majority of these voters are from the Middle East and African Region, with 887,744 voters, followed by the Asia Pacific Region with 401,390; North and Latin American Region with 345,415 and the European Region with 187,624.

The COMELEC, in Minute Resolution Number 18-1124 dated 14 November 2018, resolved to adopt various methods of voting for Filipinos overseas, they are: 1. Automated voting using the vote counting machines (VCM); 2. Postal voting and 3. Manual voting.

According to the poll body, voters in forty-one (41) Posts abroad will be adopting the automated election system using the VCMs. These Posts are Agana, Calgary, Chicago, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, Ottawa, San Francisco, Toronto, Vancouver, Washington, Brunei, Canberra, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Macau, Kaohsiung, Taichung, Taipei, Osaka, Seoul, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo, and Wellington.

Also included are Philippine Posts in Athens, London, Madrid, Milan, Rome, Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Doha, Dubai, Jeddah, Kuwait, Manama, Muscat, Al-Khobar, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv.

Meanwhile, postal voting will be adopted at the Philippine Posts in Brasilia, Buenos Aires, Mexico, Santiago, Bangkok, Beijing, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Hanoi, Islamabad, Port Moresby, Yangon, Ankara, Berlin, Berne, Brussels, Budapest, Geneva, Lisbon, Moscow, Oslo, Paris, Prague, The Hague, Vienna, Warsaw, Abuja, Cairo, at Pretoria.

And for Philippine Posts in Dhaka, Dili, Jakarta, Manado, New Delhi, Phnom Penh, Shanghai, Vientiane, Xiamen, Vatican, Amman, Nairobi and Tehran, voters there will be voting manually.

For Filipinos who will be voting by mail, packets containing official ballots with list of candidates will be sent to them at their registered addresses, while those who will be voting using the VCMs and through the manual system will have to personally appear at the polling stations in their respective Philippine Posts to cast their ballots.

Overseas Filipino voters can only vote for national positions, that is for twelve (12) Senators and one (1) Party-list.

The almost two million registered Filipino voters abroad are encouraged to take part in the month-long overseas absentee voting exercise. Harnessed, theirs is a potent force that can vote to power Senators and Party-list representatives that will genuinely work for pro-OFW programs and laws and will push for the advancement of pro-people reforms in government for the benefit of their families and loved ones back home.

For more information on the overseas absentee voting process, voters are encouraged to visit their respective Philippine Embassies, Consulates and Missions or they may visit the COMELEC website http://www.comelec.gov.ph and or follow the COMELEC-OFOV Facebook page: Office for Overseas Voting PH. ###

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