By Ferdinand Patinio

(PNA file photo by Yancy Lim)

MANILA – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is not keen on extending the voter registration activities for the 2025 midterm polls, which starts next month.

In a message to reporters on Monday, poll body spokesperson John Rex Laudiangco said they have “not envisioned” the move yet, noting that preparations for the next polls have timelines that must be followed.

“ERB (Election registration board) hearings will be conducted in October, afterwhich we shall proceed in the finalization of project of precincts, which will in turn be the basis of procurement of election forms and supplies, the number of which must be fixed, especially on the official ballots, which must be printed one ballot per one registered voter. No room for excess,” the poll body official said.

Voter registration activities will run from Feb. 12 until Sept. 30 this year.

Laudiangco’s remarks came after the poll body earlier said the voter registration period would be affected once a petition for the holding of a plebiscite to amend the 1987 Constitution through the People’s Initiative (PI) has been approved.

Under the PI method, the poll body has to verify all the signatures submitted by proponents of those who would like to amend the Constitution.

“Signature Pages, as presented before Comelec Offices of the election officers, including the certification, are part of the initiatory phases of a Petition for People’s Initiative, and will be ultimately submitted as an integral part of the petition, if and when it is filed. Kindly note that the processes being employed by the Comelec local offices are in full compliance of Comelec Resolution No. 10650,” he added.

As of Saturday, Laudiangco said over 800 cities and municipalities have received several pages of signatures for the PI.

Last week, Comelec chairman George Garcia said there is a possibility that voter registration activities will be suspended to hold the plebiscite for the PI. (PNA)