Ex-councilor denies sending letters to voters-A A +A
Sunday, October 20, 2013
ANGELES CITY --- A former city councilor, who is running for chairman in Barangay Balibago, has denied sending letters to registered voters purportedly informing them about the change in the venue of their poll precincts.
Alfie Bonifacio, who is opposing incumbent village chairman Rodelio “Tony” Mamac, said “anybody can do that.”
Bonifacio said that many people are mad at Mamac.
Despite this, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) earlier denied reports that some 2,000 registered voters at Santa Maria Elementary School in Barangay Balibago were transferred to Tinio Elementary School, another sitio of said village.
Angeles City Election Officer Numer Lobo issued the clarification after Bonifacio’s camp reportedly sent letters to each voter in said barangay indicating that the Comelec has issued a new list of voters.
Bonifacio’s purported letter stated, “Para sa inyong kaalaman, ngayon po ay may bagong pinalabas na listahan, pangalan ng mga botante ang Commission on Elections dito sa lungsod ng Angeles para sa darating an barangay election na gaganapin sa buwan ng Oktubre 28, 2013.”
Lobo explained that the Comelec did not prepare or issue a new list of voters as stated in the letters sent to Balibago residents.
A letter sent to Francisco R. Dungo, one of the residents of the three sitios (Santo Nino, A Santos, and Oak Street) covered by the Santa Maria Elementary School, stated, “Ang inyong pangalan ay kasama sa mga nailipat na magboboto sa Tinio Elementary School, sa lugar ng Abacan, Barangay Balibago, Lungsod ng Angeles. Ang presinto po ninyo ay 0097B.”
“Ito po ay tulong serbisyo publiko ng Team Bonifacio Pagbabago sa Balibago sa ating mga kabarangay, kaagapay ng Commission on Elections para gamitin ang karapatan bilang isang Pilipino na botante ayon sa ating saligang batas,” the letter added.
Lobo said he finds no violations on Bonifacio’s alleged initiative. He described it as a form of public service, saying other candidates are also helping voters find their poll precincts during elections.
“Didinan tayang benefit of the doubt. Siguru agawa na ita in good faith,” Lobo said.
The election officer said that he is set to send letters to the concerned voters to prevent confusion and disenfranchisement during the election day.
Mamac, who earlier stated that the three sitios covered by the Santa Maria Elementary School are his bailiwicks, said that according to witnesses, the letters came from Bonifacio’s alleged leaders and drivers.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on October 21, 2013.