THE nation’s more than 61 million registered voters go to the polls anew today to elect 18,071 local and national government officials, including 12 senators who will serve for six years.
In the Lower Chamber of Congress – the House of Representatives - a total of 306 seats are up for grabs in this year’s May 13 off-season election, which is “democracy in action.”
Like governors, vice governors, provincial board members, mayors, vice mayors and councilors, district and party-list representatives serve for three years.
There have been reports of massive vote-buying not only in the metropolis but also in other parts of the country. Hopefully, however, the balloting will not be marred with violence.
The Commission on Elections, through the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, is determined to ensure the holding of free, honest and peaceful polls.
The poll body is mandated to keep our elections—which are held every three years— clean, free and orderly.
In the view of many, the thousands of police and military personnel deployed in various parts of the country, notably in poll hot spots, are enough to thwart any attempt to disrupt the election.
Let’s remember that our electoral system is predicated upon the proposition that “ang tinig ng bayan ay kataas-taasang batas” (the voice of the people is the supreme law.)
And elections in a democracy, where sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them, are means by which the people may voice their will in the selection of public officers.
Thus, it is of vital importance that such voice be heard distinctly and recorded faithfully.
So, let’s all go out and vote today.