Poll body identifies 5 towns, 1 city as ‘areas of concern’-A A +A
Friday, October 5, 2012
THE provincial office of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has identified five towns and one city in Misamis Oriental province as areas of immediate concern due to “armed threats” and previous incidents in these areas.
Lawyer Carlito Ravelo, Comelec provincial supervisor, identified the city of Gingoog and the towns of Medina, Kinoguitan, Salay, Claveria and Balingasag as “areas of immediate concern” based on previous and recent incidents done by alleged members of the New People’s Army (NPA).
Ravelo cited an incident in Medina last year where alleged NPA members attacked the municipal hall as well as the burning of heavy equipment in Balingasag and Kinoguitan recently.
“It is alarming because this means that the NPAs are active in these areas and during election, their modus is to extort money they called as revolutionary taxes from candidates,” he told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.
Ravelo said they will continue to monitor these areas, especially since the filing of certificates of candidacy (COC) for next year’s elections has already started last Monday.
The filing of COCs will end today, October 5.
Ravelo also urged political candidates to coordinate immediately with the Philippine National Police (PNP) in case they received any form of communication from the NPA demanding revolutionary taxes.
He said they are also asking the PNP to coordinate with the Comelec any cases such as these.
Ravelo said this is for them to assess and evaluate if the candidates are allowed to request for security based on the Comelec’s guidelines.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 05, 2012.