By James Glenn M. Gomez

Mall voting next logical initiative, says Bautista

Posted on March 23, 2016

COMMISSION on Elections Chairman Andres D. Bautista on Tuesday gave an update on the poll body’s mall voting initiative, saying the Comelec is pushing for a voter-centric approach for the May 9 general elections.

“We are looking to enhance the voting experience. We are looking for ways and means by which we can make the voter more comfortable...when he or she exercises the right of suffrage,” Mr. Bautista said.

Mr. Bautista cited the dismal state of voting precincts, including accessibility issues regarding senior citizens and persons with disabilities, as the reasons why they are pushing for this project.

He said mall voting is the next logical initiative following the success of the “No Bio No Boto” campaign.

Mr. Bautista said 86 malls will be participating in the mall voting project, including 35 SM malls, 20 Robinsons malls, and 13 Ayala malls.

No malls owned by political personalities will be used, he pointed out.

Mr. Bautista also clarified the Comelec’s debate rules, referring to the disagreements in Sunday’s Pili Pinas 2016 Cebu Presidential Debates where Vice-President Jejomar C. Binay was prevented from bringing his notes on the podium.

“With respect [to] the common debate rules,...No. 13 states that, ’Candidates may be allowed to take notes but using only pads provided by Comelec, which would be on the podium. The use of audio and visual aids will not be allowed,” he said.