Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Registered voters now 54% of total RP population

By Marie A. Surbano

Original Story:

This is one for Ripley’s.

The total number of registered voters for the May 2010 polls has climbed to more than 49 million, or some 54 percent of the total Philippine population and rising.

This number and percentage of the registered electorate are deemed improbable.

Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal said they are expecting the number to further increase to 50 million since there are still 22 more municipalities that have not submitted their reports.

“We expect this figure to increase to 50 million with the pending 22 municipalities that have yet to submit their reports,” Larrazabal told reporters during the regular press briefing.

Currently the commission has registered a total of 49,166,089 voters nationwide.

Asked which areas these 22 municipalities belong to, Larrazabal said “it’s all over,” adding that there are also some areas in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) that have not

submitted the list of their registered voters.

Larrazabal explained that the reason some areas failed to submit their reports is that there are some that are still conducting the ERB (election registration board) hearing.

The poll official also said that they have clustered a total of 74,000 precincts and will need more than 240,000 teachers to serve as members of the board of election inspectors (BEI).

According to Larrazabal they already met with the officials of the Department of Education (DepEd) and discussed packaged of compensation for the teachers.

“With regard to compensation they were quite happy with the figures we gave them,” he said.

He added that during their meeting held this week, the Commission agreed to increase the honorariums to teachers who were given P1,000 per day per diem during the May 2007 elections.

“For the amount of work as compared to before, they get more value now as compared to the previous election,” he noted, but clarified that there is no final decision as yet since they will still meet with DepEd to finalize things and also for the conduct of the training of the teachers to familiarize them with the use of the precinct count optical scan machines which they are set to start on February to March.

James Jimenez, spokesman for the Comelec said that which is important is the non-monetary benefits that the teachers will get when they serve as BEIs next year.

“You have to remember that it is not just the money. Its also non-money. They don’t just get honorariums. They get leave credits and all these benefits would not be given to them if they did not serve in the election. What the commission is talking about is really the whole compensation package
and not just how much money they are going to make,” Jimenez said.

“Its money and non-money. This is what we presented to the DepEd which the department found acceptable and it’s not just a mathematical increase,” he added.

But the Comelec could not commit this time if there will be increase. What is certain, Larrazabal said, is that teachers will get P4,000 for four days of service in the May 2010 elections.

Original Story:

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