Philippine National and Local Elections 2016: How to Vote

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The day has come again for us Filipinos to exercise one of our sacred rights – and that is to vote during the Philippine National and Local Elections 2016. This is the time to choose once again the rightful leaders who would provide us the services that we need and would give us a peaceful and progressive country. But in order to this, we must first learn how to vote properly.

In this post, I will share to you the steps in how to vote during the 2016 election (according to ABS-CBN).

But first, let me just tell you that the device used for voting today is not anymore the PCOS machine, rather the VCM or vote counting machine – which according to COMELEC, is the version 2 of PCOS. The VCM is almost similar with the PCOS, but it has some changes that can make the election better. Like for example, the VCM has a speaker and a headset port for audio while the PCOS doesn’t have one. The VCM has a power button, but the PCOS doesn’t have because it automatically starts once plugged into the power source. (source: ABS-CBN)

Now let’s go to voting…

The first thing you need to do is to know the candidates you’ll be voting. Before you go to your respective precinct on the day of election, it is better to have a list of your candidates. Simply get a clean sheet of paper and write the names of your chosen candidates. By doing this, your voting will be faster because you will not be rattled once you got the ballot in front of you. All you need to do is to refer on your list.

Your next task is to know the precinct where you will be voting.  You can do this by going to the COMELEC office in your City or Municipality. Another way to do this is to download the COMELEC Halalan app in you smartphone. Use the precinct finder in the app to get the exact polling center where you will be voting. You don’t want to get lost during election day so be sure not to forget this step.

During the day of election, go to your precinct early. Precincts will be opened by 6am until 5pm. The earlier you get there, the better because you may be a help to the BEI’s to finish early as well. This can also benefit yourself because you can avoid the hot temperature inside the polling center.

Once there, approach the assigned BEI to get your ballot and the special marker. Remember that you are not allowed to use any pen except for the special marker provided to you. In shading, just blacken the circle properly. Avoid unnecessary markings in your ballot. As much as possible, make sure that it is neat. Never fold any part of it for your ballot may become invalid.

After shading, proceed to the vote counting machine where another BEI is waiting for you. Before inserting your ballot, take a final glance at it to make sure that everything’s fine. Whenever you’re ready, insert the ballot to the VCM in any style you want. The ballot has special markings in all sides that the machine will recognize it no matter how.

After casting your vote, a receipt will be printed by the machine. The BEI will cut it and give it to you for you to review. However, take note that you are not going to bring the receipt home. You need to place it in a box called voter’s receipt receptacle. Once done, the BEI shall put an indelible ink into your point finger’s nail.

And that’s it! you have just finished voting and participated in the Philippine National and Local Elections 2016.

But before you finish reading this post, there is one more relevant thing you need to put in mind before going to your precint on the election day. Because this national event will happen again after 3 or 6 years, you must not let this opportunity pass (except for those who were not able to made it in the registration). Your vote matters so exercise your right freely. And most importantly, because you want the right leaders for the country, VOTE WISELY!

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