Long queues mar SK registration in QC

By Jing Castañeda, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 24 2013 04:21 PM | Updated as of Jul 25 2013 12:21 AM

MANILA – More than 2,000 residents of Quezon City flocked to the Commission on Elections (Comelec)-Quezon City offices on Wednesday for day 3 of the voters' registration for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls on October 28.

The voter's registration for the synchronized polls is from July 22 to 31.

People lined up as early as 6 a.m. hoping to finish early, with registration hours set from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

However, some voters had been waiting for 5 hours and still had not started with step 1.

Some were already eating their lunch while in line.

Others complained of headaches and dizziness. Others had to return today since they did not get to finish their registration yesterday, forcing them to be absent from school or work for 2 days.

Others just went home out of frustration.

They believe that the Comelec lacked manpower that's why the lines are moving very slowly. They said the Comelec should have put up satellite registration centers at the barangay level to encourage more people to register.

Atty. Jovencio Balanquit, Comelec Election Officer of District 1, admitted their resources are limited.

But he said they are doing their best to hasten the process.

His 12-man staff has no lunch breaks and they have also already asked for augmentation from Comelec.

There are 3 steps for voter’s registration: 1) verification of registration status (new voters, transferees and those who are delisted from the Comelec list); 2) precinct assignment; 3) biometrics and encoding.

Balanquit expects 50,000 new registrants for the entire Quezon City and an additional 25,000 to 30,000 new SK registrants.

Only those aged 15 and not more than 18 on the date of the elections, October 29, can register as SK poll voters.

On the other hand, those who are eligible to register as barangay poll voters are those who turned 18 after the voters' registration ended in October last year for the 2013 elections.