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3.8m registered Pinoys may lose voting rights

AROUND 3.8 million registered voters may be disenfranchised in the national and local elections in 2016 if they fail to have their biometrics taken, a Commission on Elections official said on Friday.

In his personal Twitter account, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said the 3.8-million registered voters without biometrics would not be able to vote if they would fail to come to a Comelec registration satellite booth within three months.

“Malapit na ang deadline ng voter registration. Lahat ng wala pa ring biometrics, ide-deactivate na,”Jimenez said in his Twitter account.

Since the Comelec started the satellite registrations in all shopping malls nationwide, it has been able to take the biometrics of 500,000 registered voters.

Comelec chairman Andres Bautista said the majority or 80-percent of the people who were coming to the satellite registration areas were new voters instead of the old voters needing to have their biometrics taken.

“There are more new voters registering than those validating. The ratio is about one is to five,” Bautista said.

He said some of the remaining 3.8-million registered voters might be dead or appeared to be flying voters, which might give the Comelec a chance to also clean their data.

“Many of those from 4.3-million, are actually dead or flying voters. What we are trying to do is to clean it up,” Bautista said earlier.

Jimenez agreed.

“Right now, of the 4.3 million that have no biometrics, it’s possible that some of them registered twice. Like what the chairman has been saying, let us target the goal to get 4.3-million, either reactivation or newly registrants,” he said.

He said the Comelec had been working on the idea of having 54 million to 56 million registered voters in 2016.

Bautista, on the other hand, said once the registration period ends on Oct. 31, the Comelec will deactivate all those remaining numbers of registered voters without biometrics.

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