Another 21,000 overseas Filipinos register for absentee votingBy Jerry Esplanada
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines–An additional 21,040 Filipinos worldwide have registered as overseas absentee voters (OAVs), bringing to 53,397 the total number of Filipinos living or working in other countries who have registered during the past five and a half months, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs.
In a report posted on its website, the DFA on Monday said Philippine nationals based in Los Angeles, California, topped the list of OAV registrants with 3,305, followed by those in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 2,842; Milan, Italy, 2,525; Tel Aviv, Israel, 2,500; Singapore, 2,369; Hong Kong, 2,149; London, 1,901; Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 1,820; San Francisco, California, 1,624; and Rome, Italy, 1,489.
Rounding out the top 20 places were Toronto, Canada, 1,453; Manama, Bahrain, 1,156; New York, 1,080; Macau, 983; Beirut, Lebanon, 978; Barcelona, Spain, 949; Honolulu, Hawaii, 948; Vancouver, Canada, 933; Washington, DC, 929; Chicago, Illinois, 898.
OAV registration is also being conducted at Terminals 1 and 2 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila.
Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario earlier directed the country’s 67 embassies and 23 consulates abroad to intensify further their respective OAV registration programs.
Raul Hernandez, the DFA spokesperson, said the country’s diplomatic posts worldwide “continue to exert all possible efforts to increase the number of OAV registrants and voters for the 2013 national elections.”
He disclosed that “our foreign service posts have touched base with Filipino communities and local government organizations, civil society groups, as well as church and other Filipino groups.”
The same posts “also launched multimedia campaigns, using various social networking sites, among others,” Hernandez added.
The 12-month OAV registration, which started on Oct. 13, 2011, runs until Oct. 31 this year.