The number of candidates running in the May 14 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE) may slightly drop with the purging of some bets from the list by the Commission on Elections head office, Negros Occidental Elections Supervisor Jessie Suarez said yesterday.
He said expected to be removed from the list are those who decided not to run for office and withdrew their Certificates of Candidacy, those found to have already served three terms in succession, and SK bets not aged 18 to 24 years old on election day.
There are 23,548 BSKE candidates who filed their COCs in Negros Occidental and Bacolod City, a Comelec report showed Sunday, of which 1,545 are running for barangay captain, 13,127 for barangay kagawad, 1,559 for SK chairman and 7,316 for SK kagawad.
Suarez said he will submit the list of those who filed their COCs in Negros Occidental and Bacolod City to the Comelec head office for review tomorrow.
Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon yesterday said premature campaigning is no longer an election offense based on the SC ruling in Peñera vs. Comelec.
Campaign paraphernalia of a candidate for barangay captain in Brgy. Mansilingan, Bacolod City were reportedly proliferating in Paglaum Village yesterday.
Stickers of Mansilingan kagawad Rodolfo “Boy” Pico, who is running for barangay captain, were posted on tricycles while some of his leaflets were pasted on walls in Paglaum Village Phase 2, and the Paglaum Village Elementary School.
The posters state that Pico is looking for a household leader and that if anyone needs a job at City Hall (NGC), they only have to support Team Love Mansilingan.
Asked for her opinion, Bacolod Election Officer Mavil Majarucon-Sia said there is no case of premature campaigning. They are not yet considered candidates until the start of the campaign period on May 4.
Candidates should only post campaign materials in designated common poster areas in their barangays by the time the campaign period starts, she said.
Pico denied ordering the posting of leaflets.
Majarucon-Sia also said there were some Bacolod candidates who decided to withdraw their COCs.
They cannot give the final list of candidates for Bacolod unless it has been approved by the Comelec en banc, she said.
Meanwhile, the Comelec yesterday asked the Philippine National Police to rigorously implement checkpoints after the number of “hotspots” have been identified for the May 14 BSKE.
“We want a strict implementation of the checkpoints in accordance with our established guidelines and protocols,” acting Comelec Chairman Al Parreño said.*CPG/CGS
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