MANILA – The number of active registered overseas voters for the 2016 national elections has surpassed the 1.4 million mark, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
The DFA- Overseas Voting Secretariat said 1,400,767 overseas Filipinos are now active voters following the recently concluded 2014-2015 overseas voting registration/certification period last October 31.
“This is the first time in the history of Philippine overseas voting that we will have over one million active overseas registered voters for an election. This is the result of lessons learned from the previous electoral cycles, consistent hard work of our Foreign Service Posts, and genuine interest of our kababayans to exercise their right to choose our new leaders,” said DFA-OVS Chair, Undersecretary Rafael E. Seguis.
”Their desire to actively participate in our political process could be a sign that our democracy has reached a new level of maturity after almost thirty years of its restoration.”
Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner-in-Charge of overseas voting Arthur D. Lim also commended the DFA for the result of the registration.
“I would like to commend the Department of Foreign Affairs, especially the DFA-OVS, for its tremendous efforts contributing to the increase in the number of the overseas registered voters. The total number of overseas registered voters worldwide is now roughly 1.4 million. This is mainly because of our partner agencies such as the DFA-OVS, Foreign Service Posts/Embassies/Consulates, Commission on Filipino Overseas (CFO), and media partners,” Lim said.
Comelec chairman Andres Bautista, meanwhile, commended the efforts of the DFA and all Philippine embassies for the turnout.
”I sincerely appreciate the initiatives to put up overseas registration centers in the country as well as in our Embassies. I also commend the Embassies for including the overseas voting registration in their mobile consular services,” Bautista said in a letter to Seguis.
”I hope we can further look into the possibility of holding these registrations in public areas like malls, public squares and parks, community centers and other suitable places where the host government allows the conduct of election related activities.”
Meanwhile, the period for filing of application for reactivation of registration records for the 163,019 overseas voters who were deactivated for failing to vote in two consecutive national elections has been extended from October 31 to December 9.
The Comelec – Office for Overseas Voting has also simplified the process of the application for reactivation for overseas voters (OVF No. 1G) by allowing the filing by either sending a copy of the duly accomplished OVF No. 1G via e-mail to email@example.com or through facsimile to (0632) 521-29-52.
Applicants may also personally send the forms or mail them to the nearest embassy, consulate, mission, cultural office or at the Comelec-OFOV in Manila.
The form for application for reactivation is available at any embassy, consulate, mission, cultural office or may be downloaded from the Comelec and DFA-OVS websites.