Cebu youth groups volunteer poll registration assistance

1 12 2008

By CARINE M. ASUTILLA, ABS-CBN Central Visayas | 12/01/2008 7:38 PM

CEBU CITY – Different youth groups, community and school-based organizations gathered Monday to express their intention to assist the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in encouraging first-time voters to register for the 2010 elections.

The groups were led by YouthVotePhilippines and First Time Voters Project. Voters registration starts Tuesday.

The groups admitted that it would be a challenge for them to encourage 18-years old and first-time voters to take part for the national elections.

Ailee Tejano, project director, said that they will start their campaign by accompanying first-time voters to register on the opening date.

Tejano said that they will also launch concerts around Cebu to convince the youth to register. A voters’ education program will also be conducted in barangays.

On May 10, 2010, they vowed to organize watch groups to different voting precincts to ensure honest and clean elections.

Ernie Edralin, Akbayan-Central Visayas spokesperson, said that they will also ask the Comelec to create satellite registration offices in northern Cebu for the convenience of the youth who cannot come to the city to register.

They will also provide a Web site for the youth where they can check the background of their candidates to help them decide who to vote. Intensive information drive will also be conducted, they said.

The Comelec said it projects that there will be 4.5 million first time voters around the country especially coming from out-of-school youths.

The groups said that such number of votes is crucial especially in electing the next president.

The National Statistics Office listed six million first-time voters disenfranchised in the 2007 elections, two million in 2004 and five million in the 2001 elections. The groups said they want to ensure that no such revocation of right to suffrage would happen again.

The groups also clarified that they would not support or endorse any politicians.

The registration for this year will end on December 19, it will resume next year on January 2 until December 15.




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