Election in the Philippines

N101509169893030_7293 Pray for the people of the Philippines as the day of election nears.

Pray for those who will serve as election observers.

Elections are scheduled in the Philippines for Monday, May 10. The elections are for president and the legislature.  Glitches have been reported in the voting machines, leading President Arroyo (she is not eligible for reelection) and others to suggest that the elections be postponed.

A number of independent election observers will be present for the election – individuals who can report as to the extent that the election was conducted according to international standards and the laws of the Philippines. Many observers are on the way, only learning at the airport about the problems with the voting machines.

Who are the observers?

The role of an election observer is to observe the election process and
report if the election was conducted according to national law and
international standards. Election observers are not to advocate or work
on behalf on any one party or candidate.

The National Council of Churches of the Philippines convened the Ecumenical Voice for Peace and Human Rights in the Philippines (EVPHRP), made up of several Philippine religious and human rights
groups. to form a short-term international observation mission for the elections. This mission is called the People's International Observation Mission (PIOM). The EVPHRP issued a call for individuals to serve as observers.

In response to this request, the IPEOTeam2010 (International Philippine Election Observers Team 2010) was formed. The PIOM and the EVPHRP will organize and be responsible for housing, security, communication, transport and all other support services for the election observation teams. The Asian Network for Free Elections will also provide observers as will the International Observers Mission.

A number of individuals with connections to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) will serve as election observers.

At the invitation of our partner church, the United Church of Christ in the Philippines, the Office on Asia and the Pacific and the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program will send Nancy Eng MacNeill and Matt Lang.

Larry Emery, pastor of Walnut Grove Community Presbyterian Church in Walnut Grove, CA, has been the organizer of IPEOTeam2010. Several Presbyterians and individuals with connections to Walnut Grove church are part of this team.

Information on the election will be available on this blog and from the IPEOTeam2010 (this is a Facebook page; hopefully it is accessible.) On Twitter, wmkoenig will be tweeting about the election.

Again, please pray:

for the people of the Philippines

for the leaders of the Philippines

for those serving as observers

for a fair and open process.

May God's blessings be with all involved.

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