Be nonpartisan in OAV polls, Phl envoys urged
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - January 7, 2013 - 10:02am

MANILA, Philippines - A migrant workers' rights group on Monday called on the officials of various Philippine diplomatic posts abroad to be nonpartisan and apolitical in the conduct of the overseas absentee voting (OAV), which usually begins a month ahead of the May 2013 elections.

Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator John Monterona issued the appeal amid the recent proposal made by Commission on Election commissioner Lucenito Tagle, chairman of the committee on the overseas, to subject additional places with relatively huge numbers of overseas absentee voters to automated elections system (AES).

Tagle recommended the inclusion of five places-- Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Kuwait, Jeddah, and Riyadh-- where automated elections will be conducted in addition to Singapore and Hong Kong, where automated elections took place in 2010.

Comelec records show that registered OAVs in Abu Dhabi are 21,418, Jeddah with 42,454 voters, Kuwait with 28,458 voters, Dubai with 30,513 voters, and Riyadh with 62,509 voters.

"There were questions raised, which until now have not been properly explained on the conduct of May 2010 automated elections. Now, the Comelec wanted to include OAV in places where there are relatively big numbers of registrants," Monterona said. 

Monterona, however, said his group welcomes a detailed proposal from the Comelec  for the inclusion of the five places.

"The OFWs, through their organizations and leaders, should be allowed to scrutinize the Comelec proposed implementing rules and regulation in the conduct of automated elections abroad in line with our aim to have a fraud-free, honest, and orderly OAV," he said. - Dennis Carcamo

ABU DHABI COMELEC DENNIS CARCAMO DUBAI JEDDAH JOHN MONTERONA LUCENITO TAGLE MIGRANTE-MIDDLE EAST MONTERONA RIYADH SINGAPORE AND HONG KONG
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