MANILA - The Commission on Elections said on Friday that "all suggestions will be considered” to address possible voter disenfranchisement in the upcoming 2022 elections, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Disenfranchisement, or voter disqualification, is revocation of the people's right to vote.
"There might, however, be legal impediments to holding elections away from designated voting centers, but again, no ideas are off the table for now," Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez told reporters.
Suggestions such as setting up polling places in COVID-19 hospital wards, as well as allowing voters undergoing quarantine to cast their votes, have come up.
The Philippines is battling one of Asia's worst coronavirus outbreaks, which local transmission of the highly infectious COVID-19 Delta variant is threatening to worsen.
The Comelec earlier released an updated schedule of voter registration in their partner malls nationwide, limiting slots "in consideration of mall hours and strict adherence to health protocols."
As of July 12, 2021, the number of registered voters for Halalan 2022 breached the 60 million mark.
The Comelec is confident the number will reach 61 million—the same number of registered voters in Halalan 2019—by the end of the registration period.
—With a report from Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News
Comelec, Commission on Elections, Halalan 2022, Comelec voter registration, voter registration, disenfranchisement