MANILA – Two years before the next presidential elections, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said there will be new regulations in the conduct of the polls amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez presented a “coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) superspreader scenario” wherein he sees new regulations during the polls, particularly the holding of political rallies.
“Yes, there will definitely have to be new regulations regarding political rallies. #VoterEd,” he said in his Twitter account, @jabjimenez.
He added that over 45 million voters are expected to participate in the 2022 elections.
“Despite Covid-19, the 2022 Nat’l & Local Elections — a Presidential race — will most likely still involve more than 45 million actual voters, crowding into fewer than 100,000 polling places. Even (two) years away, those are still ideal conditions for a Covid-19 superspreader scenario,” he said.
Jimenez believes that looking at the future of electoral exercises in the country is just normal.
“We need to start imagining the future of #elections, in light of the (Covid-19). It’ll be a long-haul effort, so it can’t be put off until the pre-election year and it can’t be left to purely strictly conventional planners. #pandemicdiary,” he added.
Meanwhile, Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said there are more reasons to allow marginalized sectors to vote ahead of the majority of the voters in the country.
“Which is why we should have voting by mail, and /or early voting for PWDs, IPs, elderly and pregnant women,” she said in her reply to Jimenez’s tweet. (IA/PNA)