Iloilo City jail inmates to exercise right to vote

ILOILO City – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is allowing some 800 persons deprived of liberty (PDL) here to vote today.

These PDLs – all registered voters – are detained at the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) male female dormitories in Barangay Ungka, Jaro and on General Luna Street, City Proper respectively.

Comelec is addressing these inmates as PDLs in compliance with Article 10 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

According to Atty. Mavil Majarucon-Sia, Iloilo City election officer, “Inside the BJMP prison facilities we have appointed special election boards (EB).”

There will be two clustered precincts at the female dormitory and six for the male dormitories.

Similar to the regular voters, the PDLs will also cast their votes starting at 6 a.m. However, the casting of votes will end at 2 p.m.

There will also be support staff whose obligation is to secure the official ballots of the PDLs from their respective precincts, bring them to the dormitories for them to vote and later on retrieve the filled ballots and return them to the precincts for accounting.

On March 6, 2012 the Comelec promulgated Resolution No. 9371 to serve as rules and regulations on PDL registration and voting for national and local elections.

Under Section 2, Rule 1 of Comelec Resolution No. 9371, PDLs who may vote are:

* those confined in jail, formally charged for any crime/s and awaiting/undergoing trial

* those serving sentence of imprisonment for less than one year

* those whose conviction is on appeal. (With a report from the Philippine News Agency/PN)


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