Press Release
September 3, 2013


The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) was thoroughly quizzed at the senate when it presented its 2014 budget before the committee on finance today.

Senator Francis Escudero, senate finance chairman examined the agency's P2.88 billion budget proposal for 2014 and thoroughly asked for the breakdown of the proposal to a monetary unit.

The 2014 budget of the Comelec is broken down as follows: P2.539 billion for programs which include personal services, maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) and capital outlay and; P346.8 million for projects which includes construction of warehouse, resumption of continuing registration for local and overseas and information system strategic.

With the recently conducted national and local elections and the scheduled barangay and SK elections in a few months, the senator asked for data on how much exactly does the agency spend to register one voter, how much to enable a voter to vote and for his vote to be counted.

"We ask this because we want to get the per unit cost of the functions or duties or obligations of each agencies. For example

how much do we spend to elect a senator? How much do we spend to elect a congressman, a barangay official?"

The Comelec did not have the available data but based on the committee's computation, the agency spent a total of 12.5 billion pesos in the 2013 local and national elections. 39.2 million actually voted. The per capita cost for each local voter in the country was P319 pesos.

Escudero said the Comelec has spent nearly four times for OAV than the amount spent for each local voter. The Comelec spent a total of P200 million for the conduct of OAV which only turned an actual 118, 000 votes out of the registered 737, 859. Per capita cost of each OAV was at P1, 155 pesos.

"Can you submit all these data and document? We ask all these break downs to a monetary unit so that Congress would be appraised and informed of the budgetary needs of every agency coming to us and to allow us to allocate the scarce resources of the government" the senator told Comelec.

Escudero also asked about the 2 billion savings Comelec currently has and asked the agency to inform the committee on what it plans to do with it. Coemelc says they plan to use it to purchase a lot and build their own office and warehouse.

The proposal was recommended for plenary deliberation on condition that the requirements, data and document asked by the committee are submitted before plenary hearing starts in November.

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