Saturday, May 26, 2012

COMELEC vows PWD-friendly precincts for 2013

VERA File | PWD Files 

THE Commission on Elections has promised to make voting precincts more accessible to persons with disabilities, even if Congress fails to pass the promised The Polling Center Accessibility Act in time for the May 2013 mid-term elections.

Commissioner Rene Sarmiento said the COMELEC will issue resolutions to ensure that accessibility will no longer be a problem for PWD [persons with disabilities] voters in the upcoming polls, as it had been in the past.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

COMELEC orders Morato charged for electioneering

Manoling Morato and Maggie dela Riva
By:  Jerome Aning
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines (18 May 2012) - The Commission on Elections on Friday said it found probable cause against former Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office chair Manuel "Manoling" Morato, for possible violation of election laws when he used his television show in 2010 to endorse the candidacies of Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro Jr. and actor Edu Manzano for president and vice president.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Resolution No. 9427 - Registration of Members of the Indigenous Cultural Communities/Indigenous Peoples

Resolution No. 9427
Promulgation: 17 May 2012

WHEREAS, Article V, Section 1 of the 1987 Constitution provides that Suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the Philippines not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at least eighteen years of age, and who shall have resided in the Philippines for at least one year and in the place wherein they propose to vote for at least six months immediately preceding the election.  No literacy, property or other substantive requirement shall be imposed on the exercise of suffrage;

WHEREAS, Article II, Section 22 of the 1987 Constitution provides that the State recognizes and promotes the rights of indigenous cultural communities within the framework of national unity and development;

WHEREAS, consistent with its commitment in the 1987 Constitution, the Indigenous People's Rights Act (IPRA) of 1997, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and other international human rights instruments to which it is a Party, the State, with due recognition of their distinct characteristics and identity, accord to the members of the Indigenous Peoples (IPs)/Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) the rights, protections and privileges enjoyed by the rest of the citizens;

WHEREAS, the State recognizes and respects the indigenous political structures and commits itself to enforce and guarantee the realization of the fundamental rights and freedoms of the IPs/ICCs, including the right of suffrage, taking into consideration their customs, traditions, values, beliefs, interests and institutions;

WHEREAS, the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines (CHRP) has identified the IPs/ICCs as one of the sectors most vulnerable to disenfranchisement;

WHEREAS, upon the request of civil society organizations (CSOs), the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) convened the Inter-Agency, NGO and PO Network on Empowering the Indigenous Peoples (IPs) in the Electoral Processes on 11 January 2012 to help the Commission formulate policies to afford IPs' greater access to the electoral processes, including the registration process;

WHEREAS, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), as the primary government agency responsible for the formulation and implementation of policies, plans and programs to recognize, protect and promote the rights of ICCs/IPs, committed to support COMELEC's initiative to increase the accessibility of the electoral processes, as a means of empowering the IPs;

WHEREAS, Resolution No. 9149, as amended by Resolution No. 9168, provides the basic procedures for the system of continuing registration for Non-ARMM areas and fixes the date of application for registration from 3 May 2011 to 31 October 2012;

NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the powers vested in it by the Constitution, the Omnibus Election Code, Republic Act No. 8189 and other related election laws, the Commission on Elections has RESOLVED, as it hereby RESOLVES, to promulgate the following guidelines in the registration of qualified registrants who are members of the Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) or Indigenous Peoples (IPs).

Section 1. Coverage. - These Guidelines shall govern the applications for registration, transfer, transfer with reactivation, reactivation, correction/change of entries and validation of registration records of all qualified voters, who are members of Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) or Indigenous Peoples (IPs) as defined in Section 2 hereof.

Section 2. Definition of Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) or Indigenous Peoples (IPs). - Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) or Indigenous Peoples (IPs) shall refer to a group of people or homogenous societies identified by self-ascription and ascription by others, who have continuously lived as organized community on communally bounded and defined territory, and who have, under claims of ownership since time immemorial, occupied, possessed and utilized such territories, sharing common bonds of language, customs, traditions and other distinctive cultural traits, or who have, through resistance to political, social and cultural inroads of colonization, non-indigenous religions and cultures, became historically differentiated from the majority of Filipinos.

ICCs/IPs shall likewise include peoples who are regarded as indigenous on account of their descent from the populations which inhabited the country, at the time of conquest or colonization, or at the time of inroads of non-indigenous religions and cultures, or the establishment of present state boundaries, who retain some or all of their own social, economic, cultural and political institutions, but who may have been displaced from their traditional domains or who may have resettled outside their ancestral domains.

Section 3. Procedure for Registration; Proof of Identity. - The applicant shall personally appear before the Election Officer (EO), state his name and exact address, specifying the house number, name of the street, area, district, purok or sitio, and barangay where he resides, or a brief description of his residence.

The applicant shall present any of the following identification documents that bears his photograph and signature:
1. Current employee's identification card (ID), with the signature of the employer or authorized representative;
2. Postal ID;
3. Student's ID or library card, signed by the school authority;
4. Senior Citizen's ID; 
5. Driver's license;
6. NBI/PNP clearance;
7. Passport;
9. Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) ID;
10. License issued by the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC);
11. Certificate of Confirmation issued by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP); and
12. Any other valid ID.
Community Tax Certificates (cedula) or certifications/identification cards issued by barangay officials are not identification documents.

Section 4. Proof of identity other than by identification card. - If the registrant has no valid identification card, he may be identified under oath before the EO using the Affidavit of Identification by any registered voter of the precinct or any of his relatives within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity.  No registered voter or relative shall be allowed to identify applicants more than three (3) times.

The form shall, as much as practicable, be translated into the local languages and/or dialects commonly used in the area.
Section 5. Procedures if registrant has no identification document or is not properly identified. - If, at the time of registration, the applicant has no valid identification card as enumerated in Section 3, or is not identified pursuant to Section 4 hereof, he will not be issued application form or his pre-accomplished application form shall not be accepted.

Section 6. Filling-up the Registration Forms. - The registrant belonging to the IP community shall fill-up the pertinent Supplementary Data in Annex of the Registration Form.

If the registrant is a person with disability (PWD) at the same time, such fact shall likewise be indicated in the Supplementary Data for PWDs in Annex of the Registration Form as provided in COMELEC Resolution No. 9220.

Section 7. Assistance in the accomplishment of application form. - An applicant for registration who is a member of an ICC or IP, who cannot by himself accomplish an application for registration, shall be assisted by the EO in the preparation of his application form, or by any member of an accredited Citizen's arm, or a relative within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, or by any person of his confidence who belongs to the same household.

The assistor shall accomplish three (3) copies of the Certification/Attestation (Annex of COMELEC Resolution No. 9149) and in no case assist more than three (3) times, except the EO.  All assistors must be of voting age.

The commission shall identify and tap the accredited Citizen's arm groups to implement the provisions of these Guidelines, and shall provide for sensitization trainings to familiarize them with the application form and help prepare them for assistorial duties.

Section 8. Updating of Records of IPs. - Members of the indigenous communities who have previously registered but have not indicated the name of the IP community to which he belongs shall be allowed to update his registration records, and to indicate his tribe or community using the Supplementary Data Form for IPs found in Annex of the Registration Form.  If the applicant is also a PWD, he shall likewise fill-up the Supplementary Data Form for PWDs found in the Annex  of the Registration Form.

Section 9. Information. - All EOs are enjoined to post notice in their offices, and in public places where satellite registrations are held, instructing IPs to fill-up the Supplementary Data Form for IPs and the manner of filling-up the same.

Section 10. Update on the Software. - The information and Technology Department (ITD) shall endeavor to update the existing software application to ensure that date on IPs can be recorded, generated and analyzed.  The ITD shall coordinate with the EOs concerning the proper encoding of the data.

Section 11. Generation of Data. - The EO shall generate data on registered IPs for the sole purpose of determining policy directions for more inclusive and accessible electoral processes for the sector.  The said data shall be submitted to the ITD every three months from the start of the registration period.  The ITD shall immediately consolidate the data on the national level and submit the same to the Election Records and Statistics Division (ERSD).  The ERSD shall generate statistics on the demographics and other pertinent information involving the IPs throughout the country.  The statistics generated shall be made accessible to concerned government offices, accredited citizen's arms and other organizations that promote the rights of the IPs, subject to specific guidelines to protect the privacy of the inviduals concerned.

Section 12. Effectivity. - This Resolution shall take effect immediately after its publication in two (2) daily newspapers of general circulation in the Philippines.

Section 13. Dissemination. - The Education and Information Department shall cause the publication of this Resolution in two (2) daily newspapers of general circulation, give the same the widest dissemination possible and furnish copies thereof to the Regional Directors, Provincial Election Supervisors and EOs.

Section 14. Implementation. - The Office of the Executive Director is directed to cause the effective implementation of this Resolution.  For the May 13, 2013 National and Local Elections, COMELEC shall pilot this policy/resolution in at least sixteen (16) pilot areas with at least one (1) pilot area in every Region where there are IPs.  The pilot areas shall be chosen in coordination and consultation with the NCIP and the Inter-Agency, NGO and PO Network on Empowering the IPs in the Electoral Processes.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Senate OKs ARMM voter re-listing

By: Ron Gagalac

MANILA, Philippines (15 May 2012) - The Senate approved on 3rd and final reading on Tuesday Senate Joint Resolution No. 17, nullifying the book of voters in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and directing the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) to conduct a new general registration of voters in the region.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Resolution No. 9414 - Effects of Acceptance of Nomination

Republic of the Philippines
Intramuros, Manila


Promulgated:  April 27, 2012


 This pertains to Comelec Resolution No. 9366 promulgated on 21 February 2012, entitled "Rules and Regulations governing the 1.) Filing of Petitions for Registration; 2.) Filing of Manifestation of Intent to Participate; 3.) Submission of Names of Nominees; and 4.) Filing of Disqualification Cases Against Nominees of Party-List Groups or Organizations participating under the Party-list System of Representation in connection with the 13 May 2013 National and Local Elections, and subsequent elections thereafter," particularly Section 3, Rule 4 thereof.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

COMELEC heeds calls for ARMM re-registration

The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Friday gave assurance that it would conduct general registrations in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Earlier, the COMELEC denied requests from the Executive and Legislative Departments to conduct a new voters' registration in the region citing time constraints in the bidding of additional voter registration machines (VRMs) that will be needed for the process and the lack of funds.

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