Last Sunday, I accompanied my mom and my aunt to the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) district office to have their biometric information taken.
Though the next national and local elections are still 17 months away, there’s absolutely no need to wait until the last minute to get this done. For one, the process is very easy. Before I discuss the process we went through, let’s talk about first what this is all about.
According to COMELEC, there are 9.4 million registered voters nationwide without biometrics information. In Quezon City alone, it is estimated that as much as 30% of all registered voters have no biometrics record.
They are at risk of being removed from the voters’ list if they fail to have their biometrics record updated on or before October 31, 2015.
If you registered as a voter before the 2007 elections, which is the last time we used the manual system of voting, you are most likely included here.
You don’t have to wait for COMELEC to send you a letter requiring you to have your biometric record updated. You can check your status through their website (link: http://www.comelec.gov.ph/?r=VoterRegistration%2FRegistrationStatusVerification).
Although “biometrics information” may sound too technical for some, it is actually very simple. As soon as you arrive in the COMELEC district office, one of their staffers will take a photo of you. Your fingerprints and specimen signatures will also be recorded.
If there is a COMELEC office near your place (if you’re from Metro Manila, you can check it here) and you got an hour or two to spare, then you can have this done NOW! The entire process will only take 10 minutes!
Just don’t forget to bring a valid ID and a photocopy of it. Better do things early instead of joining the rush of last-minute registrants, or worse, facing possible removal from the roll of voters.
COMELEC, it must be noted, is facilitating registrations from Sundays to Thursdays in Metro Manila and 17 other cities which includes Angeles, Bacolod, Baguio, Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, General Santos, Iligan, Iloilo, Lapu-Lapu, Lucena, Mandaue, Olongapo, Puerto Princesa, Tacloban and Zamboanga.
The poll body is following the regular government work schedule of Monday to Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM in the rest of the country.