Thursday, May 12, 2022

Filipinos buck pandemic, heat; hold successful elections


Despite the oppressive summer heat that peaked at 90°F and the lingering presence of Covid, voters turned out in record numbers as officials staged an efficient Philippine 2022 election with minimal disruptions.

The 2022 elections were accurate and fast. On election night, results were published with 85% of election returns electronically transmitted to canvassing centers. The process was the fastest yet in the country’s history, which international observer election watchdogs have deemed to be above-board.

US State Department spokesman Ned Price said the May 9 elections were conducted according to international standards and without any major incident.

Turnout exceeded 53 million – or 80% of eligible voters – a substantial showing in a country that had been averaging a 76% turnout for the past two decades.

Despite the abundance of disinformation, Filipinos trust their election automation. According to two independent surveys, most Filipino voters trusted the results of the country’s 2019 elections (89%) and they are overwhelmingly satisfied with the automated election system (87%). Another survey revealed that 9 out of 10 Filipinos want all their future elections to be automated.

This is a trend that has held fast since the first automated elections in 2010 – and with good reason. The automated system has yielded accuracy above 99.9% since it was first introduced. Further, results are published just hours after the polls close, not weeks or months as it had been with manual elections.

While trust in the electoral process and turnout are seeing a decline in most parts of the world, Filipinos are finding a good reason to be proud of their election.