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2016 poll listing ends; no extension

The registration period for the elections next year officially ended yesterday despite calls for extension to accommodate more late registrants.

Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista lamented the influx of thousands of late registrants that he said is because of the mañana (delaying or postponing something to do) habit of Filipinos.

“We have to change that mañana habit,” Bautista said.

Filipinos were given 17 months to register for the elections but many still failed, he said. “We gave 17 months, one-and-a-half year, for people to register and validate their biometrics. And also media was very helpful in terms of people letting people know about the schedule, and our mall partners are also very instrumental,” Bautista said.

Bautista ruled out any extension of the registration. “The potential problem is that it may interfere with our timeframe for our election and that extending the voters registration may impact our preparation,” he said.

Meanwhile, a xerox machine operator was arrested by Quezon City Commission on Elections security guards and taken to the Quezon City Police District Quezon City Hall Police Detachment yesterday for allegedly selling copies of Comelec registration forms to people lined up in the last day of voters’ registration for the elections next year.

Chief Insp. Rolando Lorenzo, Quezon City Hall Police Detachment commander, identified the suspect as Glenda Viñas, assigned at the Library Section of the Quezon City Hall of Masigla St., Freedom Park 1, Batasan Hills, Quezon City.

“Nagkaroon ng commotion at may anggulo nga na nagbebenta ng registration form iyung babae. Iyung mga Comelec officers ni-reprimand siya at hindi na nag-pursue ng complaint. R15 to R30 daw ang benta niya sa form,” Lorenzo said. (Charina Clarisse L. Echaluce and Francis T. Wakefield)