Text and photos by RICHARD FALCATAN
LAMITAN CITY— The number of registrants in four big barangays of this city have doubled over the weekend.
From the usual 200 registrants per registration center on weekdays, around 400 registrants flocked to the four classrooms designated as registration centers at the Lamitan Central School.
The four barangays covered in the school are Matatag with a population of 2055 as of 2007; Malakas with 1553; Maligaya with 2467 and Malinis Poblaction with 2292.
With the increase of voters, the school became overcrowded and the forms were insufficient. It did not help that the voters registration machines (VRM) were very slow. Even Commission on Election officials had difficulty in verifying and double checking identification of registrants in order to make sure that they are residents.
Even senior citizens who are supposed to be one of the priorities in the elections had to wait in line because most of them also decided to register during the weekend.
Lamitan is one of the two cities of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao conducting registration of voters from July 9 to 18.
As of August 2007, the city had a population of 82, 074 and a total of 37, 915 registered voters as of 2010.
(ARMM WATCH is a project of VERA Files in partnership with MindaNews, The Asia Foundation and Australian Agency for International Development.)