P-Noy to push for barangay elections in October
By Aurea Calica, Sheila Crisostomo
Malacanang insisted yesterday President Aquino would push for the approval of the government;s proposal to hold the barangay elections in October and synchronize the next one with the may 2013 polls. Under the bill to be filed by interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, only one Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) representative will be elected along with barangay officials, abolishing the SK council. The minority blood in the House of Representatives has criticized Mr. Aquino for pressuring with his desire to push through with the barangay elections this October, despite calls by lawmakers and various sectors to defer the polls. They urged the House leadership to consider the dozens of bills seeking the deferment of the barangay polls. But Lacierda explained that the President would certify the bill as urgent and that he would talk to his allies in Congress about it. He said barangay and SK elections should no longer be postponed because it would only extend the mandate of the incumbent officials. “They were elected for a fixed term. Now, if we postpone the elections, and people are really looking for their barangay officials to have a fresh mandate, we should really conduct elections. The barangay is the basic political unit of our country so (the people) want to have a say on that, “he said. Meanwhile, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) will post in its offices nationwide tomorrow the list of those who have registered for the barangay and SK elections on Oct. 2 5 to eliminate prospective flying voters. “We are calling on the public to help us identify flying voters by looking at the list of registrants that will be posted outside the office of the election officer in your area on Monday,” Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said. “If you see people who are not residents in your barangay, report it to your election officer so that they may be excluded from the voters’ list, if necessary,” Jimenez said,
Under Republic Act 8189 or the Voter’s Registration Act of 1996, any voter, candidate or representative of a registered political party may challenge n writing and under oath any application for registration. Jimenez said the Election Registration Boards (ERBs) would hear for approval or disapproval any opposition to a registrant’s application. Comelec Resolution No. 9007 sets the last day to file opposition to applications for registration and transfer or registration of records on Aug. 18, while the ERB will hear cases on Aud. 20. The Comelec has scheduled the registration period for those who will vote in the barangay polls from Aug. 4 to14 and Aug. 6 to 15 for SK voters.