Do you need to be 18 years old on the day of registration for the COMELEC to allow you to register as a voter for the election on May 9, 2016?

If you are a Filipino citizen aged 18, and you have all the qualifications and none of the disqualifications provided by law for a voter, you are already qualified to vote in the election on May 9, 2016.

But you need to bear in mind that even if you are already qualified to vote, it does not necessarily follow that you can already vote on the day of the election.

Why? Because you need to register first as a voter at the Office of the Election Officer of the city or municipality where you reside.

Now assuming you are already qualified to vote and you want to register as a voter for the election on May 9, 2016, the question is when should you register?

For this election, you may register from May 6, 2014 to October 31, 2015.

But do you need to be 18 years old on the day of registration for the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) to allow you to register as a voter, assuming you have all the other qualifications and none of the disqualifications?

The answer is a resounding “No.”

Why? Because our law is clear in that you only need to possess the required voting age on the day of the election.

This means that even if you are still below 18 on the day of registration, but if, on the day of the election, you are already aged 18, you may register as a voter.

But the COMELEC in a resolution clarified that for the election on May 9, 2016, those who are still below 18 on the day of registration, but will turn 18 on or before the day of the election, may start registering only on May 9, 2015.

[References: RA 8189 (The Voter’s Registration Act of 1996) and COMELEC Resolution No. 9853 (Rules and Regulations on the Resumption of the System of Continuing Registration of Voters, Validation and Updating of Registration Records for the May 9, 2016 Synchronized National, Local and ARMM Regional Elections and Other Registration Policies)]

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