LEGAZPI CITY – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) Albay celebrated National Voters Day with a kick-off ceremony at SM City Legazpi on Monday, February 12, marking the resumption of voters’ registration.
The day began with a motorcade and the distribution of flyers from Comelec Legazpi to SM City Legazpi, followed by a brief program and a press conference.
At the press conference, Atty. Maria Aurea Bo-Bunao, Provincial Election Supervisor for Albay, highlighted the historic significance of National Voters Day, emphasizing the crucial role voters play at both the local and national levels. Bo-Bunao stressed that obtaining a voter’s certificate is not merely a formality but a source of empowerment, enabling individuals to choose the right leaders.
“This is a momentous event as it marks the first announcement of National Voters Day, the national day for voters. This is a significant step towards choosing the right leader. It emphasizes the importance of every voter’s role in the Philippines,” said Bo-Bunao.
Atty. Juana S. Valeza, Regional Election Director of Comelec V, underscored the importance of resuming voter registration, making it accessible in convenient locations to encourage more people to register.
“People will feel that the government is bringing its services closer to them and enabling them to participate so they can be given the right to vote, and we can feel their voices come election time,” Valeza said.
Valeza also shared the seven (7) municipalities/cities that are easily accessible for people to register: Virac, Catanduanes; Masbate City; Sorsogon City; Pili, Camarines Sur; Naga City; Camarines Norte; Albay; and Legazpi City.
Further, Comelec V announced plans to reach out to Indigenous People (IP) and Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDL), along with large companies/agencies with multiple employees.
The event also showcased the BU Kugos, a Special Satellite Registered Anywhere Project (SSRAP) to be held at the Bicol University College of Engineering (BUCENG). Bo-Bunao revealed that the entire province of Albay, including all municipalities and cities, would conduct registrations on February 19-20, specifically catering to almost 30,000 students of Bicol University (BU), including its satellite campuses.
Kiannie Oliver, 18, from Legazpi, Albay, acknowledged the convenience of nearby registration but noted potential overcrowding issues. Despite concerns about time constraints, Oliver recognized the overall positive impact for the people, stating, “It is more convenient, but as time goes on, it seems to become like the old system where it’s still a first-come, first-served basis. There is still trouble if you have other commitments. But overall, this is good.”
Voter registration will be available from February 12 to September 30, operating between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., including Saturdays and holidays, unless specified otherwise by the Comelec. I Alliah Jane Babila