DFA on track to exceed 1M absentee voter target

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Monday, August 4, 2014


FACING criticisms from Senate President Franklin Drilon, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said on Monday that it is right on track to meet, if not exceed, their target one million new overseas absentee voters (OAV) for the 2016 elections.

In a statement, DFA–Overseas Voting Secretariat (DFA-OVS) head Undersecretary Rafael Seguis said that they are actually looking at the possibility of doubling the number of registered voters in the 2013 polls.

"At the current pace of registration, we could have an overseas voter stock of over two million for the 2016 presidential elections. Attaining this goal can definitely be a game changer," Seguis said.

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He cited that in just the first two months of OAV registration in different Foreign Service Posts (FSPs), a total of 38,670 have already filed their Overseas Voter Registration (OVR) applications.

Seguis said this is composed of the 18,631 OVR applications filed in May and 20,039 submitted last June.

"When added to the existing accumulated overseas voter stock of 975,263, the one-million registered overseas voters mark is broken by the total of 1,013,933," noted the DFA official.

Seguis noted how the Commission on Elections and the DFA-OVS had previously set a goal of one million new OA voters for the registration period that started last May 6.

On Sunday, Drilon had expressed frustration over the low number of Filipinos abroad that have been able to register and vote in previous elections.

To note, all Filipino citizens, who expect to be abroad between April 9 to May 9, 2016, which is the overseas voting period for the 2016 presidential elections, at least 18 years old on May 9 2016, and not disqualified by law, are being urged to register as an overseas voter.

They can register in all Philippine Foreign Service Posts, including the three Manila Economic and Cultural Offices (MECO), DFA Office of Consular Affairs, and at other Comelec-approved registration centers within or outside the Philippines. (HDT/Sunnex)

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