Police: Polls in Oro generally peaceful-A A +A
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
THOUSANDS of voters in Cagayan de Oro cast their ballots during Monday's barangay elections and authorities declared the balloting generally peaceful.
Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (Cocpo) chief Graciano Mijares said there were no reported incidents in Monday's barangay polls particularly in the city.
Mijares said police officers were deployed in voting centers to keep the election violence-free and orderly.
He said that aside from the deployment of law enforcers inside the public schools where the election took place, police were also visible in the city’s streets and main thoroughfares.
Mijares said they have also set up assistance desks in some areas to cater to complaints on election-related violations from voters and candidates.
Senior Police Officer 4 Ernesto M. Sanchez, deployed at West City Central School in Barangay Carmen, said everything was in place when the polling precincts opened their doors to voters yesterday.
Sanchez said they were vigilant of any suspicious-looking individuals in the area to prevent any bomb scar. Backpacks were inspected before voters could enter the school to cast their ballots.
As early as 6 a.m. Monday, different voting precincts in the city were already swarmed with people waiting for the polling places to open.
Most of the precincts opened on time at 7 a.m. as required by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
Nelia Santos, a voter in Gusa National High School, and Lope (family name withheld) were not able to cast their votes.
Santos complained that she couldn’t find her name and precinct number while Lope’s name was not found in the list of voters.
Lope said she is a consistent voter but she wondered why her name was not listed citing that she never failed to vote in every election.
Some voters in Puntod and Iponan elementary schools also complained on similar incidents – precinct numbers could not be located.
In Consolacion Elementary School, a voter, who asked not to be named, reported that a candidate allegedly ordered his voters to obtain a copy of their votes by placing a carbon paper beneath the paper in exchange for P1,500.
The voter already reported what he witnessed to the city Comelec, and hoped that the election body will sanction the said official.
In City Central School, voters were able to cast their votes orderly.
In this year’s barangay elections, 278 candidates ran for the position of village chair for the city’s 80 barangays, according to the Comelec.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 29, 2013.