Votes Cast in Tokyo Now Over 5,000
With five days left to end the overseas voting period on 09 May 2016, 5,107 overseas voters have so far cast their votes in Tokyo as of 04 May 2016. The voter turnout so far represents 25% of the total 20,363 registered voters in Tokyo and has already surpassed the 3,058 highest voter turnout recorded in Tokyo for the 2004 National Elections.
In its effort to increase voter turnout, the Philippine Embassy in Tokyo has already issued 12 notices to the public online and in bulletin boards regarding information dissemination campaign on overseas voting-related issues and concerns.
In its website, the Embassy posted the following notices for the information of the public: CLOV containing 20,363 registered voters; list of Returned Mailed Ballots as of 02 May 2016 (updated as and when necessary); list of voters who directed or indicated their address as “c/o Philippine Embassy in Tokyo”; and invitation to seafarers who are registered overseas voters to vote in Tokyo. The Embassy has also announced that all ballots have already been sent by mail to the declared addresses of overseas voters registered in Tokyo and in 18 other prefectures under its jurisdiction. The Embassy’s latest information campaigns include instructions on how to claim the ballots and/or how to cast votes either by postal or personal voting.
Japan is on holiday season this week in observance of the Golden Week from 3 to 5 May 2016. During this season, many Japanese, including Filipinos married to Japanese, are out of town or the country for the holidays. As a result, the Special Board of Election Inspectors (SBEI) in Tokyo registered a low voter turnout within this brief period. Arrival of postal ballots has been postponed as the postal office is also closed during this season. The Embassy, however, expects to receive a large volume of postal ballots on 06, 07, and 09 May 2016 when the services of Japan Post resume.
For the 2016 National Elections, the Philippine Embassy in Tokyo is implementing the Automated Election System (AES) allowing the 20,363 registered overseas voters to cast their votes either by postal or personal voting.