Comelec Plans to Resume Voter’s ID Issuance Amid National ID Delays

MANILA — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is exploring the reintroduction of voter’s identification cards, a service suspended since December 2017 due to the rollout of the national Philippine Identification System (PhilID). Comelec Chairperson George Garcia announced on Wednesday that the commission has initiated discussions on resuming the issuance of these IDs within the year, addressing the gap left by delays in the distribution of the national ID.

According to Philippines News Agency, the primary focus of the renewed initiative will be to provide IDs to overseas Filipinos, aiming to ensure the cards feature high security with 32 distinct security features while also being cost-effective. “In the case of our national ID, many are still unable to get them. Hopefully, before the end of the year, we can bring it back,” Garcia stated, highlighting the commission’s efforts to fill the void created by the slow rollout of the national ID system.

The suspension of the voter’s ID issuance was originally implemented to avoid duplication of identification documents following the government’s introduction of the PhilID. Despite this, the voter’s ID from Comelec has been recognized as a valid form of identification, and its absence does not prevent registered voters from participating in elections. The proposed reintroduction of the voter’s ID aims to provide an additional, secure form of identification for Filipinos, especially those living abroad, as the country navigates the challenges of fully implementing the national ID system.