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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Former San Juan mayor denounces SEC has not registered young voters

Former San Juan Mayor and law professor Héctor Luis Acevedo.

By The Star Staff

Former San Juan Mayor and law professor Héctor Luis Acevedo urged Governor Pedro Pierluissi and State Election Commission (SEC) interim President Jessika Padilla to comply with the registration process for new voters in public and private schools on the island.

He said the SEC has a serious delay in the registration of new voters for the upcoming primary.

“There are less than 20 days left before the closing of the voter registration for the primary, on April 31, 2024, and the State Election Commission (CEE) has more than 100 schools left to visit to register students. This, together with the closure of the Permanent Registration Boards in most towns, has produced a crisis in the electoral participation of young people,” he said.

The Electoral Law of 2020 left to the SEC’s jurisdiction the task of registering new voters. “Now it turns out that days before registration for the primaries closes, there are thousands of voters left unregistered by the design of the authors of that disastrous Law,” he said.

“The Commission stopped making this aggressive registration effort since 2021, so the young people who graduated in 2021, 2022 and 2023 in hundreds of schools did not have the opportunity to enroll in their educational centers,” he said.

Governor Pierluissi has refused to meet to discuss amendments to the Electoral Law and vetoed the proposal of all the opposition parties that represent 67% of the electorate and that restored that registration mandate in schools.

As an example of the situation, he provided a copy of the latest report from March of this year which reveals that at the moment 120 schools around the country are unregistered. “This is alarming a few days before the celebration of primaries that will define the candidates running in the November general elections. It is of the greatest urgency that this situation be resolved so that there is the will and the necessary resources for this purpose. No Doing so is violating the right of young people to register and vote,” he stressed.

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