With just a few hours left before voting ends, the ongoing University Student Council (USC) elections at the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman registered a 26.01 percent voter turnout as of 4:30 pm on Friday, May 31.

Polls for the two-day hybrid USC elections began on Thursday morning and will conclude on Friday at 7:00 pm.

Per data provided by UP Diliman Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Jerwin Agpaoa, the late afternoon turnout on the second and last day of the elections accounts for 6,479 votes cast out of 24,913 qualified student voters.

As expected, the majority of voters by Friday afternoon are undergraduate students, constituting over 90 percent of the votes.

The undergraduate voter turnout stands at 34.77 percent, while the graduate voter turnout is at 5.45 percent.

At this point, the College of Law still boasts the highest voter turnout among all academic units on campus, with 59.83 percent. It is followed by the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy at 44.91 percent, School of Economics at 42 percent, UP Diliman Extension Programs in Pampanga and Olongapo at 41.45 percent, and College of Social Work and Community Development at 38.77 percent.

Except for the Asian Center, School of Archaeology, College of Fine Arts, College of Human Kinetics, Institute of Islamic Studies, School of Labor and Industrial Relations, School of Urban and Regional Planning, and Technology Management Center, the remaining colleges have already posted a double-digit voter turnout.

Meanwhile, outgoing UP Diliman USC Chairperson Mary Sunshine Reyes and Vice Chairperson Sean Kirby Latorre sent a letter on Friday afternoon to the UP Diliman Office of Student Projects and Activities requesting to extend the voting period until next Monday, June 3.

“As we slowly transition to a new term for the USC, the period for Student Council Elections has been an avenue for discourse to highlight different campaigns and advocacies that our community stands for,” they said.

“Amidst various issues within and outside the University affecting the rights and welfare of the UP community, it is more than crucial that we are able to maximize student participation and ensure genuine student representation,” they added.

“We understand the logistical challenges but believe the benefits of accommodating student needs outweigh the obstacles.”

According to Agpaoa, however, the University Student Electoral Board has decided to push through with the current schedule.

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