by Hector Pascua, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau, Austria | 11/14/2009 VIENNA, Austria – An initiative that would make Filipino migrant voters more aware of the Philippine electoral process and encourage them to go out and vote in the May 2010 polls will be launched by the end of November.

“We all know that in May 2010, around 46 million Filipinos, including us here abroad thru the Overseas Absentee Voting (OAV), will exercise our most sacred right of suffrage. Will we make it in choosing and installing the right person/s to lead our country this time around? Historical records of the electoral process document Dirty and Unorderly Elections (DUE). In fact, the open issue of the 2004 election, the scandal of "Hello Garci" tapes, is still fresh in our minds,” said PINAS First Chairman Manny Sarmiento.
 
After several meetings and deliberations, about 21 conveners came together and agreed to conduct the awareness campaign towards a peaceful and clean May 2010 elections.

 

They agreed to use the word “HOPE” which stands for “Honest, Orderly and Peaceful Election” as their campaign slogan.

“As concerned Filipinos in Austria, it behooves us to do our part in promoting understanding and involvement towards an Honest, Orderly and Peaceful Election,” Fr. Mars Sahulga said.

The initiative’s four objectives are as follows --Throw light into the context, character and dynamics of the Philippine electoral process; Communicate to the Pinoys in Austria the importance of the 2010 elections; Encourage the broadest possible participation of Pinoys (individual or community organizations thru their leaders) in the entire election process; and provide relevant and appropriate information that will enable potential voters to participate in the elections.

HOPE will be launched on November 30, 2009, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the "Breitenfeld Pfarre", Florianigasse 70, 1080 Wien (U6 Josefstädterstrasse)

Organizers are expecting a huge turnout of Filipinos who would be participating in the campaign.