Comelec to hold plebiscite for creation of Davao Occidental-A A +A
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) will hold a plebiscite for the creation of the new province of Davao Occidental, simultaneous with Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections on October 28.
According Commissioner Christian Robert Lim, holding the plebiscite together with the village and youth polls will save the poll body some P29 million since they will only spend more than P11 million. At least P40 million is needed to hold a separate plebiscite.
On July 23, 2013, Congress enacted Republic Act (RA) 10360 or an "Act Creating the Province of Davao Occidental."
A total of 523,862 registered voters (as of the May 13, midterm polls) of Davao del Sur, excluding Davao City, will participate in the plebiscite that will determine whether the new province will be created or not.
The proposed province will be composed of the municipalities of Sta. Maria, Malita, Don Marcelino, Jose Abad Santos and Sarangan. The five municipalities were carved out from the eight municipalities in the second legislative district of Davao del Sur.
Lim said the voters in the said province will be using a longer ballot since it would include voting for the creation of Davao Occidental. Voters will be asked to answer the question by yes or no.
In RA 10360, the poll body is mandated to supervise the conduct of a plebiscite for the approval of the creation of Davao Occidental by the majority of the votes cast by voters in the affected areas, within 60 days after the law becomes effective.
However, the Comelec on November 27, 2012, suspended the conduct of all plebiscite as a matter of policy in view of the preparations for the May 13, 2013 National and Local Elections. The policy of deferment was later extended on July 9, 2013.
On July 31, 2013, the poll body approved the holding of the plebiscite. (FP/Sunnex)