Comelec official maintains stand vs extended voter registration amid fresh calls

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 15) — An official from the Commission on Elections on Wednesday said the poll body remains averse to extending the period for voter registration despite another appeal from the Senate.

Commissioner Marlon Casquejo, however, said the matter may be discussed again in the Comelec en banc despite its rejection earlier. But he said an extension remains unlikely since it will affect other preparations for the 2022 elections.

"Mahirap na po magkaron ng extension because there are so many preparations na maapektuhan po. We can’t compromise those other preparations because also of the pandemic situation, talagang gipit na kami," he told lawmakers during the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee hearing on the Automated Election System.

[Translation: It's hard to extend because there are many other preparations that will be affected. We cannot compromise those because we are really struggling due to the pandemic.]

Senators on Tuesday adopted a resolution urging the Comelec to extend the deadline for voter registration until the end of October.

The registration period is set to end on Sept. 30 despite several suspensions due to community quarantine restrictions.

CNN Philippines correspondent Melissa Lopez contributed to this report.