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PART II

RIGHT TO SUFFRAGE
CONSTI BASIS OF SUFFRAGE
1987 PH CONSTI, ART 5, SEC 1 & 2
Section 1. Suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the
Philippines not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at
least eighteen years of age, and who shall have resided in
the Philippines for at least one year, and in the place wherein
they propose to vote, for at least six months immediately
preceding the election. No literacy, property, or other
substantive requirement shall be imposed on the
exercise of suffrage.
Section 2. The Congress shall provide a system for securing
the secrecy and sanctity of the ballot as well as a system for
absentee voting by qualified Filipinos abroad.
The Congress shall also design a procedure for the disabled
and the illiterates to vote without the assistance of other
persons. Until then, they shall be allowed to vote under
existing laws and such rules as the Commission on Elections
may promulgate to protect the secrecy of the
ballot.
NATURE OF SUFFRAGE
1973 CONSTI, ART 5, SEC 4
Section 4. It shall be the obligation of every citizen qualified
to vote to register and cast his vote.
OMNIBUS ELECTION CODE SEC 4, 261(y), 264
Sec. 4. Obligation to register and vote. - It shall be the
obligation of every citizen qualified to vote to register and
cast his vote
Sec. 261. Prohibited Acts. - The following shall be guilty of an
election offense:
(y) On Registration of Voters:

(1) Any person who, having all the qualifications and none of
the disqualifications of a voter, fails without justifiable excuse
to register as a voter in an election, plebiscite or referendum
in which he is qualified to vote.
(2) Any person who knowingly makes any false or untruthful
statement relative to any of the data or information required
in the application for registration.
(3) Any person who deliberately imprints or causes the
imprinting of blurred or indistinct fingerprints on any of the
copies of the application for registration or on the voter's
affidavit; or any person in charge of the registration of voters
who deliberately or through negligence, causes or allows the
imprinting of blurred or indistinct fingerprints on any of the
aforementioned registration forms, or any person who
tampers with the fingerprints in said registration records.
(4) Any member of the board of election inspectors who
approves any application which on its face shows that the
applicant does not possess all the qualifications prescribed
by law for a voter; or who disapproves any application which
on its face shows that the applicant possesses all such
qualifications.
(5) Any person who, being a registered voter, registers anew
without filing an application for cancellation of his previous
registration.
(6) Any person who registers in substitution for another
whether with or without the latter's knowledge or consent.
(7) Any person who tampers with or changes without
authority any data or entry in any voter's application for
registration.
(8) Any person who delays, hinders or obstruct another from
registering.
(9) Any person who falsely certifies or identifies another as a
bona fide resident of a particular place or locality for the
purpose of securing the latter's registration as a voter.
(10) Any person who uses the voter's affidavit of another for
the purpose of voting, whether or not he actually succeeds in
voting.
(11) Any person who places, inserts or otherwise includes, as
approved application for registration in the book of voters or
in the provincial or national central files of registered voters,
the application of any fictitious voter or any application that
has not been approved; or removes from, or otherwise takes

out of the book of voters or the provincial or national central


files of registered voters any duly approved voter's
application, except upon lawful order of the Commission, or
of a competent court or after proper cancellation as provided
in Sections 122, 123, 124 and 125 hereof.
(12) Any person who transfers or causes the transfer of the
registration record of a voter to the book of voters of another
polling place, unless said transfer was due to a change of
address of the voter and the voter was duly notified of his
new polling place.
(13) Any person who asks, demands, takes, accepts or
possesses, directly or indirectly, the voter's affidavit of
another, in order to induce the latter to withhold his vote, or
to vote for or against any candidate in an election or any
issue in a plebiscite or referendum. It shall be presumed
prima facie that the asking, demanding, taking, accepting, or
possessing is with such intent if done within the period
beginning ten days before election day and ending ten days
after election day, unless the voter's affidavit of another and
the latter are both members of the same family.
(14) Any person who delivers, hands over, entrusts, gives,
directly or indirectly his voter's affidavit to another in
consideration of money or other benefit or promises thereof,
or takes or accepts such voter's affidavit directly or indirectly,
by giving or causing the giving of money or other benefit or
making or causing the making of a promise thereof.
(15) Any person who alters in any manner, tears, defaces,
removes or destroys any certified list of voters.
(16) Any person who takes, carries or possesses any blank or
unused registration form already issued to a city or
municipality outside of said city or municipality except as
otherwise provided in this Code or when directed by express
order of the court or of the Commission.
(17) Any person who maliciously omits, tampers or transfers
to another list the name of a registered voter from the official
list of voters posted outside the polling place.

office and deprivation of the right of suffrage. If he is a


foreigner, he shall be sentenced to deportation which shall be
enforced after the prison term has been served. Any political
party found guilty shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not less
than ten thousand pesos, which shall be imposed upon such
party after criminal action has been instituted in which their
corresponding officials have been found guilty. In case of
prisoner or prisoners illegally released from any penitentiary
or jail during the prohibited period as provided in Section
261, paragraph (n) of this Code, the director of prisons,
provincial warden, keeper of the jail or prison, or persons who
are required by law to keep said prisoner in their custody
shall, if convicted by a competent court, be sentenced to
suffer the penalty of prision mayor in its maximum period if
the prisoner or prisoners so illegally released commit any act
of intimidation, terrorism of interference in the election. Any
person found guilty of the offense of failure to register or
failure to vote shall, upon conviction, be fined one hundred
pesos. In addition, he shall suffer disqualification to run for
public office in the next succeeding election following his
conviction or be appointed to a public office for a period of
one year following his conviction.

Sec. 264. Penalties. - Any person found guilty of any election


offense under this Code shall be punished with imprisonment
of not less than one year but not more than six years and
shall not be subject to probation. In addition, the guilty party
shall be sentenced to suffer disqualification to hold public

SECTION 5. Disqualifications. The following shall be


disqualified from voting under this Act

1987 PH CONSTI, ART 5, SEC 1


Section 1. Suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the
Philippines not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at
least eighteen years of age, and who shall have resided in
the Philippines for at least one year, and in the place wherein
they propose to vote, for at least six months immediately
preceding the election. No literacy, property, or other
substantive requirement shall be imposed on the
exercise of suffrage.
SUFFRAGE FOR OVERSEAS ABSENTEE VOTERS
RA 9189, SEC 5(d))

d) An immigrant or a permanent resident who is recognized


as such in the host country, unless he/she executes, upon

registration, an affidavit prepared for the purpose by the


Commission declaring that he/she shall resume actual
physical permanent residence in the Philippines not
later than three (3) years from approval of his/her
registration under this Act. Such affidavit shall also state
that he/she has not applied for citizenship in another country.
Failure to return shall be cause for the removal of the
name of the immigrant or permanent resident from the
National Registry of Absentee Voters and his/her
permanent disqualification to vote in absentia|||(The
Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003, REPUBLIC ACT NO.
9189, [2003])

SUFFRAGE FOR LOCAL ABSENTEE VOTER


EO 157
PROVIDING FOR ABSENTEE VOTING BY OFFICERS AND
EMPLOYEES OF GOVERNMENT WHO ARE AWAY FROM
THE PLACE OF THEIR REGISTRATION BY REASON OF
OFFICIAL FUNCTIONS ON ELECTION DAY
WHEREAS, under the electoral law now in force the rule is
that a person has to be physically present in the polling place
whereof he is a registered voter in order to be able to vote;
WHEREAS, the only exception is that established by Section
169 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 881, which allows members of
the board of election inspectors to vote in the polling place
where they are assigned on election day, under certain
conditions;
WHEREAS, there are other persons who, by reason of public
functions and duties, are assigned on election day in places
other than their place of registration, and under existing
rules, are thus unable to vote;
WHEREAS, the democratic principle requires the broadest
participation in electoral and similar exercises by persons
who have all the qualifications and none of the
disqualifications to vote;

WHEREAS, government officials and employees who are


assigned to places other than their place of registration must
not be deprived of their right to participate in electoral
exercises;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, CORAZON C. AQUINO, President of the
Philippines, do hereby order:
Sec. 1. Any person who by reason of public functions and
duties, is not in his/her place of registration on election day,
may vote in the city/municipality where he/she is assigned on
election day: Provided, That he/she is a duly registered voter.
Sec. 2. Thirty (30) days before the election, the appropriate
head of office shall submit to the Commission on Elections a
list of officers and employees of the office who are registered
voters, and who, by reason of their duties and functions, will
be in places other than their place of registration, and who
desire to exercise their right to vote, with the request that
said officers and employees be provided with application
forms to cast absentee ballots in their place of assignment.
The list and the request shall be under oath.
Sec. 3. Upon verification by the Commission on Elections that
the persons included in the list are qualified voters, it shall
transmit the exact number of application forms to the head
of the office making the request.
Sec. 4. The application forms shall be returned only
accomplished to the Commission on Elections not later than
April 25, 1987.
Sec. 5. Upon verification of the applications, the Commission
shall transmit the exact number of absentee ballots to the
appropriate head of the government office for distribution to
the applicants.
Sec. 6. The head of the office shall prepare a sworn report on
the manner of distribution of the absentee ballots, indicating
therein the number of ballots transmitted to each province,
the names of the persons to whom the absentee ballots are
delivered, and the serial numbers of ballots. It shall be

accompanied by a certificate of eligibility to vote absentee


for each particular voter.

Done in the City of Manila, this 30th day of March, in the year
of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and eighty-seven.

Sec. 7. For the purpose of the 1987 congressional election,


the absentee voters shall vote only for candidates for
senator.

OEC, SEC 169

Sec. 8. The voters who cast absentee votes shall vote one
week before election day. They shall do so by delivering to
the Commission on Elections Regional Director, or the
Provincial Election Supervisor or the City or Municipal
Election Registrar of the place of their assignment ballot
within two security envelopes, the one containing the
absentee ballots indicating only that it is an envelope of the
Commission on Elections, and the other envelope indicating
the name of the absentee voter and his/her affidavit number.
Sec. 9. The Commission on Elections official concerned to
whom the absentee vote is delivered shall immediately
transmit by the fastest means available to the Commission
on Elections the special Commission on Elections absentee
ballot within two security envelopes so that the same are in
the central office of the Commission one day before the
elections.
The transmittal letter shall indicate the names of the persons
who cast the absentee votes, their voters' affidavit numbers
and their certificates of eligibility to vote absentee.
Sec. 10. The Commission on Elections shall canvass the votes
cast by absentee voters and shall add the results of the same
to the votes reported throughout the country.

Sec. 169. Voting privilege of members of board of election


inspectors. - Members of the board of election inspectors and
their substitutes may vote in the polling place where they are
assigned on election day: Provided, That they are
registered voters within the province, city or municipality
where they are assigned: and Provided, finally, That their
voting in the polling places where they are not registered
voters be noted in the minutes of the board of election
inspectors.
RA 71166 SEC 12
Sec. 12. Absentee Voting. - Absentee voting as provided
for in Executive Order No. 157 dated March 30, 1987 shall
apply to the elections for President, Vice-President and
Senators only and shall be limited to members of the
Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine
National Police and other government officers and
employees who are duly registered voters and who, on
election day, may temporarily be assigned in connection with
the performance of election duties to place where they are
not registered voters.

RA 10380
Sec. 11. The Commission shall promulgate the necessary
rules and regulations to implement this Executive Order.
Sec. 12. Section 169 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 881 shall
remain in force and effect, and shall continue to govern the
voting privilege of members of the Board of Election
Inspectors. All laws, orders, issuances, rules and regulations
or parts thereof inconsistent with this Executive Order are
hereby repealed or modified accordingly. lawphi1.net
Sec. 13. This Executive Order shall take effect immediately.

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR LOCAL ABSENTEE VOTING FOR


MEDIA
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of
the Philippines in Congress assembled:
SECTION 1. Declaration of Policy. The State shall ensure the
free exercise of the right of suffrage by all citizens of the
Philippines not otherwise disqualified by law.
SEC. 2. Local Absentee Voting for Members of Media. The
Commission on Elections shall extend the right to vote under
the local absentee voting system provided under existing

laws and executive orders to members of media, media


practitioners, including the technical and support
staff, who are duly registered voters and who, on
election day, may not be able to vote due to the
performance of their functions in covering and
reporting on the elections: Provided, That they shall be
allowed to vote only for the positions of President, Vice
President, Senators and Party-List Representative.
SEC. 3. Implementing Rules and Regulations. The
Commission on Elections shall, within thirty (30) days from
the effectivity of this Act, promulgate the implementing rules
and regulations which shall include a system of accreditation
and verification of the members of media, media
practitioners, the technical and support staff, who are
qualified to avail of local absentee voting.
SEC. 4. Appropriations. The initial funding of this Act shall
be charged against the current years appropriations or from
any available savings of the Commission on Elections.
Thereafter, such amount as may be necessary for the
continued implementation of this Act shall be included in the
annual General Appropriations Act.
SEC. 5. Separability Clause. If any part or provision of this
Act shall be declared unconstitutional or invalid, other
provisions hereof which are not affected thereby shall
continue to be in full force and effect.
SEC. 6. Repealing Clause. All laws, presidential decrees,
executive orders, resolutions, rules and regulations, other
issuances, and parts thereof, which are inconsistent with the
provisions of this Act, are hereby repealed or modified
accordingly.
SEC. 7. Effectivity. This Act shall take effect fifteen (15)
days following its publication in at least two (2) newspapers
of general circulation.

SUFFRAGE FOR DISABLED AND ILLITERATE VOTERS


1987 CONSTI, ART 5, SEC 2
Section 2. The Congress shall provide a system for securing
the secrecy and sanctity of the ballot as well as a system for
absentee voting by qualified Filipinos abroad.

The Congress shall also design a procedure for the disabled


and the illiterates to vote without the assistance of other
persons. Until then, they shall be allowed to vote under
existing laws and such rules as the Commission on Elections
may promulgate to protect the secrecy of the
ballot.
RA 10366, SEC 11
SEC. 11. Assistance in the Accomplishment of the Ballot. A
person with disability or senior citizen who is illiterate or
physically unable to prepare the ballot by himself or herself
may be assisted in the preparation of his or her ballot by a
relative by consanguinity or affinity within the fourth civil
degree, or if he or she has none, by any person of his or her
confidence who belongs to the same household, or by any
member of the BEls. For this purpose, the person who usually
assists the person with disability or senior citizen, such as a
personal assistant, a caregiver or a nurse shall be considered
a member of his or her household: Provided,That no voter
shall be allowed to have an assistor on the basis of illiteracy
or physical disability unless it is so indicated in his or her
registration record. Nevertheless, if the physical inability to
prepare the ballot is manifest, obvious, or visible, said voter
shall be allowed to be assisted in accomplishing the ballot by
a qualified assistor, even if not stated or indicated in the
registration record:Provided, further, That the assistor must
be of voting age.
The assistor shall hind himself or herself in a formal
document under oath to fill out the ballot strictly in
accordance with the instructions of the voter and not to
reveal the contents of the ballot prepared by him or her, and
shall prepare the ballot for the voter inside the voting booth.
Except for the members of the BEIs, no assistor can assist for
more than three (3) times. Any violation of this provision shall
constitute an election offense punishable under Section 262
of the Omnibus Election Code.
RA 8189, SEC 14
Section 14. Illiterate or Disabled Applicants. Any illiterate
person may register with the assistance of the Election
Officer or any member of an accredited citizens arms. The

Election Officer shall place such illiterate person under oath,


ask him the questions, and record the answers given in order
to accomplish the application form in the presence of the
majority of the members of the Board. The Election Officer or
any member of an accredited citizens arm shall read the
accomplished form aloud to the person assisted and ask him
if the information given is true and correct The accomplished
form shall be subscribed by the applicant in the presence of
the Board by means of thumbmark or some other customary
mark and it shall be subscribed and attested by the majority
of the members of the Board.
The attestation shall state the name of the person assisted,
the name of the Election Officer or the member of the
accredited citizens arm who assisted the applicant, the fact
that the Election Officer placed the applicant under oath, that
the Election Officer or the member of the accredited citizens
arm who assisted the applicant read the accomplished form
to the person assisted, and that the person assisted affirmed
its truth and accuracy, by placing his thumbmark or some
other customary mark on the application in the presence of
the Board.
The application for registration of a physically disabled
person may be prepared by any relative within the fourth
civil degree of consanguinity or affinity or by the Election
Officer or any member of an accredited citizens arm using
the data supplied by the applicant. The fact of illiteracy or
disability shall be so indicated in the application.
VOTERS REGISTRATION, DEFINED
RA 8189 SEC 3(a), (g), 15, 20