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Profile of Philippine Voters

Profile of Philippine Voters

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Profile of Philippine Voters by Carmelita Nuguid Ericta and Florante C. Varona. Circa 2003.
Profile of Philippine Voters by Carmelita Nuguid Ericta and Florante C. Varona. Circa 2003.

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Published by: Manuel L. Quezon III on Apr 16, 2009
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03/13/2013

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 1
P
rofile of 
P
hilippine
V
oters
1
 by
Carmelita Nuguid. Ericta
2
 andFlorante C. Varona
3
 
I. INTRODUCTION
In a democratic country such as the Philippines, leaders who will lead thecountry for a fixed number of years are decided by the Filipino voters through anelection. Filipinos are encouraged to register and to vote as an exercise of their constitutional rights and privileges. For several decades since 1947, starting fromelection campaign up to the casting and tallying of votes, Filipino voters arealways involved with high enthusiasm. Thus, describing some characteristics of Filipino voters such as their geographical distribution, family income andeducation would give us a glimpse or a picture of the country’s voting populationThis paper aims to present the Philippine voters characteristics based onthe results of census and surveys conducted by the National Statistics Officesuch as the 2000 Census of Population and Housing, 2000 Family Income andExpenditure Survey and Labor Force Survey. Other sources such as Data fromprevious Philippine election compiled by the Commission on Elections are alsoutilized.
II. ELECTIONS IN THE PHILIPPINES
The Commission on Elections is mandated by law as the premier guardianof the ballot. Being an independent constitutional body it has an exclusive power to administer and enforce all laws and regulations relative to the conduct of elections and other political exercises, such as plebiscites, initiatives, referendaand recalls.Election is defined as the means by which the people choose their officialsfor a definite and fixed period of time. Article 5 of the constitution of thePhilippines stated that suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the
1
A paper p
resented at the PSA Annual Conference on November 12, 2003, Sulu Hotel, QuezonCity
2
Administrator and Civil Registrar General, National Statistics Office
3
Statistician III, National Statistics Office
 
 
 2
Philippines, not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at least 18 years of ageand who shall have resided in the Philippines for at least one year and in theplace wherein they propose to vote, for at least six months immediatelypreceding the election. No literacy, property, or other substantive requirementshall be imposed on the exercise of suffrage. The Omnibus Election code of thePhilippines states on its general provision that it shall be the obligation of everycitizen qualified to vote to register and cast his vote. Also, the Republic Act No.8189 or “Voter’s Registration Act of 1996” cites that in order to be able to vote inany election, a qualified voter shall be registered in the permanent list of votersin a precinct of the city or municipality wherein he resides. However, personsdisqualified from registering are not allowed to vote such as the following (1)those who have been sentenced by final judgment to suffer imprisonment of notless that one (1) year. (2) any person who has been adjudged by final judgmentby a competent court or tribunal of having committed any crime involvingdisloyalty to the duly constituted government such as rebellion, sedition, violationof the firearms laws or any crime against national security and (3)Insane or incompetent persons declared as such by competent authority. For 2000, thecountry’s seven national prisons, registered a total population of 23,695 inmatesor 0.05 percent of 43.3 million voting population.The Voter’s Absentee Voting Act of 2003 allows all qualified citizens of thePhilippines abroad to vote for president, vice-president, senators and party-listrepresentatives. However, those who lost their Filipino citizenship in accordancewith Philippine laws and those who have expressly renounced their Philippinecitizenship and who have pledged allegiance to a foreign country are not eligibleto vote.
Types of Elections
In the Philippines, regular elections are held regularly over a period of timeas mandated by the constitution. These are the following:1.
National Elections
, for President and Vice-President of the Philippines shallbe held every six years, and for Senators, every three years.2.
Local Elections
, for Members of the House of Representatives, Party ListRepresentatives and Provincial, City and Municipal Officials, every 3 years3.
Barangay Elections
, every 3 years4.
ARMM Elections
, for Regional Governor, Regional Vice-Governor, andRegional Assemblymen for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao(ARMM), every 3 years5.
Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Elections
, every 3 years, synchronized withthe barangay elections
 
 3
6.
Plebiscite, Referendum, Initiative and Recall
– these are not held on aregular basis.
III. VOTING POPULATION
Based on the 2000 Census of Population and Housing results (Table 1),the total population 18 years old and over numbered to 43.3 million persons.There were slightly more women (50.1 percent) than men (49.9 percent). Of the16 regions in the Philippines, Region IV or Southern Tagalog had the biggestvoter’s population, with 6.7 million persons accounting for 15.6 percent of thetotal
.
The National Capital Region (NCR) followed with 6.2 million persons or 15percent. Central Luzon (Region 3) registered the third largest voter’s populationwith 4.7 million persons or 10.87 percent of the total. These three regionscomprised 41.36 percent of the total population 18 years old and over. On theother hand, CAR had the least number of voters with only 764 thousand persons.
2004 Projected Voting Population
For the coming 2004 election, the projected voting population is estimatedat 49.25 million persons (please refer to table 3). This figure is about 60 percentof the projected 82.67 million Philippine population for 2004. Female votingpopulation number a little more than the expected male voters with a sex ratio of 98.89 males for every 100 females. There are more male voters in the younger age groups 20 to 24 and 25 to 29 years old while female voters dominate theolder age groupings 50 years old and over.

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