As the year 2024 begins, the Philippines is already gearing up for the 2025 National and Local Elections, which will be a significant event for the country. To ensure that every eligible citizen has the opportunity to vote, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) has announced that the voter registration process will begin on February 12th, 2024, and continue until September 30th of the same year.

This seven-month timeframe provides ample opportunity for eligible citizens to register to vote and participate in the democratic process. Voter registration is a critical step in the electoral process, and every eligible citizen must be given the chance to participate. During the registration period, eligible citizens will be required to provide personal information, such as their name, address, and date of birth, as well as proof of identity and residency.

Once registered, citizens will be able to cast their votes in the upcoming elections and have a say in the future of their country. The COMELEC’s decision to extend the voter registration period to seven months is a significant step towards promoting voter participation and ensuring that every eligible citizen’s voice is heard. With this extended timeframe, eligible citizens have no excuse not to participate in the upcoming elections and make their voices heard. So, if you are an eligible citizen, make sure to register to vote and play your part in shaping the future of the Philippines.

Voter Registration Locations and Schedule:

To facilitate this crucial process, interested individuals can head to the nearest Office of the Election Officer (OEO) in their respective areas. The OEO will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, including holidays. However, please note that the OEO will be closed during the three days of Holy Week on March 28, 29, and 30. To enhance accessibility, the Register Anywhere Program (RAP) will be in operation until August 31, offering additional sites such as malls, universities, and government offices for registration.

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Step-by-Step Guide for First-Time Voters:

  1. Begin the registration process by visiting COMELEC’s iRehistro website.
  2. Navigate to the “Application Forms” section on the site.
  3. Complete the CEF-1 online form to initiate your registration.
  4. Once the online form is filled, print the CEF-1 on a long bond paper back-to-back. Crucially, refrain from signing or affixing your thumbmark on the application forms just yet; this is to be done in the presence of the Election Officer.
  5. When ready, bring the physical CEF-1 form along with a valid government ID that bears your signature to your local COMELEC office or RAP site.
  6. It’s important to remember that filling out the online form doesn’t automatically make you a registered voter; a personal appearance at your local COMELEC office or RAP site is required.

For Reactivation or Transfer of Registrations:

If you are looking to reactivate or transfer your registration, an online application can be filed until September 7. Submit the application to the official email addresses of the OEOs, available on the COMELEC website.

Overseas Filipino Voters:

For our overseas Filipino compatriots, the registration period is open until September 30, 2024. Take your valid Philippine passport to the nearest Philippine Embassy/Consulate General or designated registration centers for processing. The filing period for overseas Filipinos commenced on December 9, 2022, and will continue until September 30, 2023. Applications can be submitted at any Post abroad, designated registration centers outside the Post, or designated registration centers within the Philippines.

Nationwide Implementation of Register Anywhere Program (RAP):

Starting February 12, the RAP will roll out nationwide, accepting applications in all capital cities and towns as well as highly urbanized cities (HUCs). RAP sites will be strategically set up in malls, universities, government offices/agencies, select church organizations, private establishments, and educational institutions. This program aims to provide additional avenues for voter registration, specifically targeting places with higher concentrations of people, ensuring broader accessibility to the registration process.

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Additional Reminders:

Local COMELEC offices are ready and willing to accept applications from February 12 to September 30, operating from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mondays to Saturdays. Note that this schedule includes holidays unless the COMELEC announces otherwise. A noteworthy reminder from the COMELEC Chairperson is that only government-issued IDs will be acceptable for registration. Company IDs will no longer be considered valid.

Stay informed, actively participate in the democratic process, and ensure your voice resonates in the 2025 National Elections. For detailed information and real-time updates, visit the COMELEC website. Your vote counts!

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