November 30, 2023

PBBM urges poll body to ‘decisively’ act on electoral reforms

PRESIDENT Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Friday urged the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to immediately act on the several electoral reforms proposed during the preparatory consultations with various stakeholders.

“It is encouraging to know that prior to this summit, the preparatory consultations with various stakeholders in the public and private sectors were conducted nationwide. From these pre-summit meetings, it has come to the attention that several reforms in the election process must be made,” the President said during his speech at the first-ever 2023 National Election Summit at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza in Pasay City.

“And given these findings, let us take these matters seriously as the outputs obtained from these activities are indisputably significant. We must act on it decisively and enforce concrete measures to turn our plans into reality,” President Marcos added.

The chief executive also urged the Comelec to “open yourselves to the recommendations of our experts and Filipino voters, who are [our] partners in ensuring free, orderly, honest, and credible elections.”

“As a democratic and republican government, we derive our power from the people, we recognize that sovereignty is exercised by its citizens through suffrage. On this note, I underscore the COMELEC’s critical role as the guardians of our people’s sovereign will in ensuring the integrity of the electoral process,” President Marcos said, noting the poll body must ensure “accurate and unalterable” results to maintain the sanctity of the elections and people’s trust.

With the advent and the use of modern technologies, the President said the government can implement positive reforms and make election result transmission faster and maintain its accuracy.

The President said the Comelec should continuously discuss how to improve the election processes, including the calibration of the capacity of teachers as electoral board members and integration of voter education in the curricula of the K to 12, tertiary level and the National Service Training Program.

“So as we engage with discussions amongst our students and the Filipino youth, we likewise promote and encourage them to form and cast an informed vote, as well as discerningly choose the leaders of our society,” President Marcos said.

“It is therefore timely that we hold this summit to enhance the preparations for the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections in October this year, and all our other future electoral exercises,” the President noted.