Comelec undecided in naming Davao del Sur as political hotspot-A A +A
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
THE Commission on Election (Comelec) Davao region on Monday said it is still in the process of reviewing whether Davao del Sur should be declared a hotspot and be placed under their watch for the 2013 elections.
Comelec assistant regional director lawyer Marlon Casquejo, speaking in Monday's Kapehan sa Dabaw at SM City Davao, said, "We're still in the process of verifying if it's still needed."
He said election in Davao del Sur has had a history of violence.
He added that when he was a candidate, his son was killed right in front of their house in Malita right after the elections in 2007 by the group of one of Malita's well-known politicians, Claude Bautista.
Thus, in the 2010 elections, Davao del Sur was placed under Comelec control giving the agency the power to control all government offices and the disbursement of funds.
He said the agency can declare any area as under "Comelec control" based on previous situations in the area in the past elections and upon recommendations from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). After which, another recommendation will be submitted from the regional office of Comelec to Comelec En Banc.
He added that Comelec can also impose curfew hours in the province, even regulating all the campaign hours of all candidates. By declaring an area as under the control of the Comelec, occurrence of hostilities can be prevented.
Meanwhile, the official added that an absentee voting has been granted by the Comelec for the workers in the media industry who will not make it on the casting of votes on May 13, 2013.
"An order was issued on October 9, directing the commission to set implementing rules and regulations for media. It is already approved. Let's just wait for the provisions on how to go about it," he added.
He said all absentee voters must be a registered voter and a bonafide member of a media outfit before being allowed to avail of the absentee voting.
He said that the complete list of qualified candidates will be released on December 21. This will also include the list of the delisted candidates.
"It is the law department of Comelec who will do the delisting. What Comelec-Davao is doing is just ministerial," he said.
However, no petitions for disqualifications were filed in the region he said.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on October 16, 2012.