You Can Now Apply For Local Absentee Voting For The 2022 Elections
See who can apply.
On October 29, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) issued Resolution No. 10725 that contains the guidelines for local absentee voting for the upcoming 2022 national and local elections. On November 10, however, the COMELEC released an announcement saying that they are now accepting applications for this voting system.
“The Commission on Elections will begin accepting applications from those qualified to avail of local absentee voting in connection with the May 9, 2022 National and Local Elections.”
What is local absentee voting?
According to Resolution No. 10725, local absentee voting is a system of voting where qualified voters can cast their votes for national positions (such as President, Vice President, Senators, and Party-List Representatives) in cities or municipalities where they are not registered voters, but are assigned there to perform their duties on election day.
This may be availed by the following:
- Government officials and employees
- Members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)
- Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP)
- Media practitioners, as well as their technical and support staff
However, they can only avail local absentee voting if they are duly registered voters (which means that their registration records are not deactivated).
“On election day, in case of government officials, members of the PNP and AFP, that they are assigned temporarily to perform election duties in places where they are not registered voters; or in case of media voters, that they will not be able to vote due to the performance of their functions in covering and reporting on the conduct of elections,” according to the Resolution.
How can you apply?
Media practitioners must submit their application forms to the Office of the Regional Election Director (ORED) of the National Capital Region (NCR), Office of the Election City Officer (OCRO) in highly-urbanized or independent cities outside the NCR, and the Offices of the Provincial Election Supervisor (OPES) for other areas. Government employees and officials, as well as members of the AFP and PNP, however, shall submit their application forms to their supervisors/heads of offices/commanders/officers next-in-rank.
The deadline of applications is on March 7, 2022, while local absentee voting will take place on April 27 to 29, 2022 from 8 AM to 5 PM.
What are the safety protocols?
Because we are still in the middle of a pandemic, health and safety protocols will be observed on voting day. For one, the facility should be spacious and well-ventilated, and a strict queuing system should be implemented. Temperature checks, submission of health declaration forms, social distancing, and bringing of own pen are also required.
If approved government officials and employees test positive for COVID-19 on the days designated for local absentee voting, and have to undergo quarantine within the premises of their offices or headquarters where the local absentee voting will take place, they will still be allowed to cast their votes, provided that strict health protocols will be followed and the ballots are delivered to their quarantine facility.
For more information about local absentee voting, you may visit COMELEC’s official website.