GEC working to populate decolonization registry
by Nathaniel Macaraeg
Guam - Just as the Guam Election Commission works to protect every vote cast, it's also working to populate the ever growing Decolonization Registry.
According to GEC executive director Maria Pangelinan says as this week, a little over 6,000 people have signed up for the Decolonization Registry. Although a far reach from the over 46,000 people registered to vote in Guam's elections, she encourages those who can to sign up. "It's simply to register natives inhabitants, so that when the plebiscite comes up they can vote in the plebiscite," she said.
While a plebiscite has yet to be scheduled by the Commission on Decolonization, she says continuing to populate the decolonization registry puts the GEC a step ahead. "I think just because there's no date set what is the hurry to register, but for us here at the Guam Election Commission, the more we have registered already, the more we can verify ahead of time how many are there," she explained.
The GEC along with Senator Ben Pangelinan's office have worked to populate the Registry by holding registration drives at events like the Micronesia Island Fair and the Liberation Parade. In fact, GEC is working on a pilot program on its website for voters to find out if they're registered. "We won't have the list up but what we're trying to do is to get people if interested in trying to figure out if their registered or not," said Pangelinan. "They can simply in part of our website - we will have something you type in your name and one more piece of information to validate possibly your date of birth and then the system will check if your registered or not."
The pilot program is set to launch next month. Pangelinan ultimately says if you are a native inhabitant or a descendant of one who was naturalized under the Organic Act in 1950, it's you're right to exercise your inalienable right to self-determination.
To register, you can stop by the GEC or at Senator Pangelinan's Office in Hagatna.