New York City – Filipinos in the East Coast have 18 more days to vote for the Philippine National Elections. Voting has begun for overseas voters last 9 April for presidential, vice presidential, senatorial, and party-list representatives.
In New York, where registered voters expect to receive their voting packets by mail, some community members still chose to personally cast their ballots on the first day of voting at the Philippine Consulate General.
Broadway star Lea Salonga was one of the overseas voters who braved the rains to make it to the polling place at the Kalayaan Hall Annex of the Philippine Center. “For me, I like being able to have a say in the country’s affairs,” said the Tony Award-winning actress. She urged the other Filipino-Americans to take part in the elections because “the (Presidential) elections happen only once every six years and no election has to be treated with apathy.”
She also visited the temporary assembly line for voting packets and urged for community members to lend their time and assist the Consulate in completing the task of sending 26,000 voting packets to all registered voters by April 16.
The Consulate General will be open every day including Saturdays and Sundays to receive ballots from 9AM to 5PM until 9 May at 5 AM EDT. The public is also advised that Vote Counting Machines (VCM) will be operated for batch feeding of ballots every Monday and Thursday starting at 9 AM. Mailed ballots must be received no later than May 9 at 9AM.
The Consulate General will send Ballot Collection Teams to Philadelphia, PA; Southern New Jersey; Jersey City, NJ; Bergen, NJ and Needham, MA for voters who would like to personally submit their ballots to the Consulate’s representatives. For more information, the public may check the PCGNY website at www.newyorkpcg.org.
(Featured photo is Ms. Lea Salonga, Broadway star voting early at the Philippine Consulate. Photo and press release from the Philippine Consulate General of New York.)