Over 61M voters, 18,000 bets in polls

A Board of Election Inspector posts the voters' list at Dr. Rafael Palma Elemtary School in Zobel Roxas, Manila Sunday, 12 May 2019. Voters will troop to election precincts throughout the country on Monday, 13 May 2019. (Bob Dungo Jr.)

More than 61 million voters are expected to choose a total of 18,072 national and locals positions during the mid-term elections on Monday, 13 May 2019.

Voters will be electing 12 senators, 61 seats for party-list organizations, 245 members of the House of Representatives, 81 governors and vice governors and 780 members of Provincial Boards.

Filipinos will also be voting for 145 city mayors and vice mayors; 1,628 city councilors; and 1,489 municipal mayors and vice mayors; and 11,916 municipal councilors.

Commission on Elections (Comelec) counts a total 61,843,771 registered voters while there are a total of 1,822,173 voters overseas.

The country’s top three regions with the most number of registered voters are: Region IV-A (Calabarzon) with 8,674,351; National Capital Region (NCR) with 7,074,603; and Region III (Central Luzon), 6,829,611.

Of the country’s 17 regions, the Cordillera Administrative Region has a total 1,013,418 registered voters.

For overseas voting, the Middle East and Africa regions have the highest number of Filipino voters with 887,744 followed by Asia Pacific with 401,390, North and Latin America with 345,415 and Europe with 187,624.

Filipinos abroad started voting one month ahead of the elections in the Philippines, which was last 13 April and it will end on 13 May at 6 p.m. (Philippine Time).

85,768 VCMs

Just like in the May 2016 polls, Comelec will use vote counting machines (VCM) to tally ballots.

The Comelec is utilizing a total of 85,768 VCM in the same number of clustered precincts nationwide. There a some 7,000 VCM as contingency.

As part of the automated polls, the poll body is pilot-testing the Voter Registration Verification Machine (VRVM) in some areas for this year’s polls.

The VRVS will automate the system of verifying voter registration at the polling precinct, instead of using the printed copies of Election Day Computerized Voters List (EDCVL), before a voter is given the ballot on election day.

The VRVS pilot areas are Manila, Quezon City, Cavite, Pangasinan, Cebu, Negros Occidental, Davao del Sur and Zamboanga del Sur.

Polling centers would still have copies of EDCVL as reference in case the name of the voter did not show up on the machine.

The 2019 polls is the fourth time that the country will be holding an automated polls nationwide. The first one was in the 2010 presidential polls, the 2013 midterm elections was the second and the last was during the 2016 presidential polls.

Election Boards

Approximately 255,000 teachers or Election Boards (EB) will be manning voting precincts and assist voters in the elections. The serving of teachers as EBs in the elections is voluntarily.

Meanwhile, the Comelec en banc sitting at the National Board of Canvassers is set to convene in the afternoon of 13 May.

The seven-man panel is looking to proclaim the 12 winning senators within two weeks after the polls.