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PIA Press Release
2010/05/10

DepEd appeals to Comelec to extend voting hours beyond 7 pm

Pasig City (10 May) -- Amidst complaints of long lines in polling centers nationwide and voters going home, the Department of Education is appealing to the Comelec to extend the voting hours beyond 7 pm if necessary. The voting hours was originally 7:00 am to 6:00 pm but the Comelec has just decided to extend it up to 7:00 pm.

Secretary Mona D. Valisno said that teachers serving as BEIs are prepared to accept votes so long as there are voters who wish to cast their ballots. "Suffrage is a fundamental right of every Filipino so our BEIs should be prepared to stay in the polling precincts to accept voters," she said.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has extended the voting hours by one hour amid reports of delays that marred the start of voting earlier in the day. With the additional hour, voters can cast their votes until 7 p.m.

"We would like to inform everybody especially those out there voting and the Board of Election Inspectors that it seems that the start the voting process was not as fast as we had expect or desired," Melo said at a press briefing at the Comelec.

Valisno said that teachers can stay even beyond 7 pm so long as there are voters who wish to vote. She added that teachers can even stay at their posts beyond 7:00 pm so long as they are not asked by Comelec to stay overnight.

"We ask the Comelec to be open for further extension so as to ensure a high voter turn-out provided that our teachers are provided security at night. We have to determine the real voice of the people and that means allowing as many people as possible to vote today," she said. (DepEd) [top]

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