#ExtendVotingHoursPH online trends as problems prevent Filipinos from voting before closing time

Lines in Pinyahan Elementary School as voters experience sweltering heat and vote-counting machine malfunctions on May 9, 2022. (Philstar.com/Jazmin Tabuena)

Calls to extend voting hours erupted on social media just minutes before the districts’ scheduled closure at 7pm amid reports of faulty vote-counting machines (VCMs) on national and local election day 2022.

Electoral watchdog Against Daya reported that this year saw the largest number of machine breakdowns compared to 2019 mid-term surveys and 2016 national surveys.

Comelec Commissioner Giorgio Garcia he said there were some 1,800 VCM which so far has worked poorly. Problems include paper jams, rejected cards, VCM scanners, and VCM printers not working or not printing correctly.

Interim spokesperson for Comelec John Rex Laudiangco he also said that voters can fill in ballots and leave them to the district to be batch-fed in the presence of accredited observers and citizen arm.

Many, however, urged voters to keep copies of their completed ballots as well wait for the VCMs to be repaired so that they can personally see their voting receipts for problems of possible mounted tampering.

The voting time is only until 19:00, but only those who are within 30 meters from the circumscriptions at that moment can still cast their vote.

The situation prompted a concerted call for the electoral body to extend the period given the number of defective VCMs that are causing long lines in the districts.

“If the voters are DISENFRANCISED because they don’t exceed the 7:00 pm limit, then there is nothing they can do. Comelec should (be) made responsible. The Filipino people deserve vote-counting machines that work, “reported journalist Karen Davila. tweeted.

Deprivation of voters’ rights refers to the restriction of a person’s suffrage or the deprivation of the right to vote due to circumstances.

The hashtag “#ExtendVotingHoursPH” has also been popular on Twitter following the situation.

“We have to #ExtendVotingHoursPH @COMELEC. It is not the people’s fault, accept it and extend the voting hours so that everyone can vote! Colourette CEO Nina Cabrera he wrote.

“I have a friend who has been (online) FOR 12 HOURS because the VCM is broken. This is YOUR responsibility. This is deprivation of the right to vote. @COMELEC #ExtendVotingHoursPH !!! ” another Twitter user She said.

“Having deprived the rights of voters, are you leaving them in the dark? After your inefficiency, do you allow the voter to suffer the consequences of your actions? No thanks, COMELEC. Extend the voting time! #ExtendVotingHoursPH, ”a different Filipino he wrote.

So against Daya reported the electoral body for “not having extended the voting time, despite repeated appeals on social media and voters who face long lines in various districts in the Philippines”.

As of this writing, the hashtag “#ExtendVotingHoursPH” is number one trending on local Twitter.

According to a relationship, election officials will no longer follow the 30-meter radius rule. This means that everyone who is already in line will be able to vote.