Six barangays in Lanao del Sur and one in Samar are set to conduct their Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) on Tuesday after failing to do so on Monday, according to the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
Comelec chairman George Garcia explained that the election paraphernalia in the seven barangays did not arrive on time for the October 30 elections.
“Mayroong tayong anim na barangays (Lanao del Sur) na ngayon gagawin ang halalan sapagkat hindi kasi dumating ng eksaktong hanggang alas dose kahapon ang mga kagamitan,” he said in a Super Radyo dzBB interview on Tuesday.
(We have six barangays in Lanao del Sur that will now hold the election today because the equipment did not arrive exactly before twelve o’clock yesterday.)
“Mayroon ding isang barangay na gagawin din ang halalan diyan sa Calbayog City sa Samar. ‘Yung kasing mga sundalo at pulis kasama ‘yung ating mga election official na may dala ng kagamitan papunta sa barangay ay pinaputukan ng mga insurgent. Hindi pa nakakarating sa barangay ay pinaputukan kaya hindi naituloy ang pagdadala ng gamit,” he added.
(There is also a barangay that has yet to hold elections in Calbayog City in Samar. The soldiers and the police, along with our election officials who were carrying election equipment to the barangay, were attacked by insurgents. They were fired upon before reaching the barangay, so they were unable to bring the equipment to the area.)
Garcia said the voters in the affected barangays were properly informed on Monday of the delay in the BSKE.
The elections were rescheduled on Tuesday, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
In a press conference after precincts officially closed on Monday, Garcia declared that the BSKE 2023 was “a victory of sorts” even as he said no election had ever been perfect.
He made the remark amid reports of election-related violence killing at least three in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), and thousands of teachers backing out of poll duty in the BARMM and in Abra.
Asked why the teachers withdrew as Board of Election Inspectors, Garcia cited the teachers’ previous experience of shooting incidents or being threatened for their poll work.
The Comelec earlier called for a one-week transition period before the proclaimed winners of the 2023 BSKE assume office.
Garcia had said that this was the Comelec’s position in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision which found the postponement of the BSKE to October 30, 2023 unconstitutional.
President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. earlier in the day congratulated the elected local officials and reminded them to be honest at all times in serving their constituents.
In a video message, Marcos urged those elected officials to always prioritize the welfare of the public. —KBK, GMA Integrated News
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