Improved Number-A A +A
By DP Limlingan
Thursday, September 19, 2013
THE Pampanga Police Provincial Office said that at least 62 barangays in the province have been identified as "critical areas” in relation to the forthcoming barangay elections next month.
It may sound like an alarming figure for the Kapampangans and our law enforcement authorities, considering the past killings of barangay officials in Pampanga which many remain unsolved.
The number of barangays considered as areas of concern has in fact significantly improved, from the previous 144 in 2010. In the said year, there were election-related killings and violence reported in the said number of barangays.
The present number of barangays, meanwhile, is noted to have problems with insurgency, too. These are then hotbeds of conflict during the years where armed and militant groups were aplenty.
It seems that barangay elections have become highly contested exercises that some candidates resort to violence just to get some mileage over their opponents.
For years now, there have been a number of barangay officials or candidates in barangay elections that met their death due to politics. Most of these killings were tagged as related to the polls. It can be observed that election hotspots become hotter when the campaign season nears.
Some people resort to the process of elimination prior to the elections. They would rather see their political opponents dead rather than winning. Some are too obsessed that they would go for the win no matter what the circumstances and repercussions are.
The Philippine National Police meanwhile ensures the safe conduct of the elections this October 28. Election season or not, it’s their job to maintain peace and order of every community in the land. The police hierarchy said they are in close coordination with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) this election season.
With the number improved, our police must have been working well in maintaining order. It’s evidence that they are there to serve and protect.
This early, there are quite a number of tarpaulins and posters that are evidently part of campaign materials of some barangay election aspirants. Some are already gearing up their political machineries and enriching their campaign chests from donations of friends and supporters. It’s the calm before the storm as they say.
I’ve heard that some politicians are starting to coddle some of their bets for the coming polls, endorsing them to their electorate and giving them materials and some finances for the coming campaign.
Some politicians on the other hand are fielding their sons, brothers or relatives to build their kingdoms. Well, that’s the reality in today’s politics.
In a related development, the proposal to defer the elections for the Sangguniang Kabataan is now on its third reading and is on its way to being signed into a law. Why not abolish it by the way?
The call for the abolition of the Sangguniang Kabataan is getting louder as many have observed that it has become ineffective in dealing with the programs and projects for our youth. It’s a good training ground anyway for future leaders.
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Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on September 20, 2013.