International groups prepare PWDs for 2013 elections-A A +A
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
A NATIONWIDE forum roadshow will hit Iloilo City on September 27 to create awareness on voter registration period among disabled people organizations (DPOs).
The forum, intended for persons with disabilities (PWDs), also aims to facilitate PWDs’ rights to increase their participation in the May 2013 midterm elections.
Spearheaded by the Asia Foundation with support from the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAid), a three-year program is implemented in six areas in the Philippines with identified high number of DPOs based on the database of the National Council on Disability Affairs.
The areas covered by the program are Legaspi City in Albay, Cotabato City, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, Davao City, La Union, Iloilo City and Dumaguete.
The Fully Abled Nation (FAN) national roadshow in Iloilo City is expected to strengthen the PWDs, as well as agencies and groups that facilitate their participation in the elections.
The program also hopes to increase voter awareness among PWDs, promote partnerships to enhance support and awareness of PWD participatory needs and strengthen the capabilities of DPOs supporting PWD advocacies.
The Asia Foundation is collaborating with the Foundation for Communication Initiatives (FOCI), Commission on Elections, Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), DPOs and other elections-focused non-government organizations to increase awareness of the Comelec and local government units on the needs and concerns of PWDs and promote participation in the elections and other democratic processes.
Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor will keynote the Fan Day forum while Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog will welcome the participants.
Speakers include Asia Foundation assistant program officer Emil Tapnio, AusAid program officer Bernadette Cariaga, FOCI president Emily Abrera, National Council on Disability Affairs executive director Carmen Zubiaga, Mayor Liecel Mondejar-Seville of New Lucena, Iloilo, Councilor Christian Sorongon of New Lucena, and Iloilo City Persons with Disabilities Affairs Office team leader Blesilda Mabilog.
Meanwhile, the office of Iloilo City election officer Reiner Layson is conducting an ongoing voter registration at Iloilo City-Comelec office at the Terminal Market building until October 31.
Started in August 1, the registration also accepts application of PWDs and special registration conducted in scheduled satellite registration centers in the different city districts Monday to Saturday until September 30.
It also conducted a special registration for 275 PWDs residing in the city and province of Iloilo last August 11 at SM City Iloilo.
However, the Comelec will stop registration of voters on October 1-5 in deference to the filing of certificates of candidacy, but will resume registration from October 6 to October 31. (LCP)