Oro’s barangay politics ‘getting more intense’

AS elections for the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) nears, political rivalry is somehow getting more intense day by day, particularly in barangay Nazareth where the Nacayas and Rodriguez’ camp clashed at Macasandig Police Station on Friday.

Macasandig police station commander Senior Inspector Ramsis Cartagena said they are intensifying police visibility in their area of responsibility following the altercation of the two political parties yesterday.

Incumbent Nazareth barangay chief Jocelyn Rodriguez and supporters brought to the police on Friday two supporters of village chief candidate Reina Nacaya for allegedly spreading black propaganda by distributing leaflets with libelous statements.

In an interview, Rodriguez said they made a citizen’s arrest after the two supporters were caught in the act doing an "election offense".

Rodriguez said they are pursuing a libel case against the Nacayas for spreading lies against them.

Team Nacaya and supporters, meanwhile, stormed to the police station to rescue their supporters, claiming they were illegally arrested by the Rodriguezes.

"During ganiha sa commotion daghan man supporters from both sides, wala nato nabantayan nga niapil ug lakaw ang ilang gidala diri (we didn’t notice that the persons who were brought in here also got away). Natingala ko nganu gipagawas diretso (I was surprised when they let the two persons go) because it is still under investigation and they are still undergoing case profiling," Cartagena said.

Cartagena clarified that the police remain non-partisan not taking any sides, though they’ll still find and bring the concerned persons to the station for investigation.

"Igo raman mi mo-facilitate (we only facilitate them) to file the case. It is the Comelec who gets to decide if indeed both committed an election offense so we will refer this to them," he added.

Meanwhile, the Nacayas also cry foul after several election paraphernalia were destroyed by unidentified persons. The Nacayas, in their Facebook page, alleged that the persons behind these actions are the "goons" of the Rodriguezes.

But Cartagena said they did not monitor any private armed group in their area of responsibility.

On the same day, the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (COCPO) conducted a sendoff ceremony and official deployment of all of the Cocpo personnel to intensify security measures with elections only two days away.

Cocpo spokesperson Police Superintendent Mardy Hortillosa said over 300 cops will be deployed to polling centers and another 200 will be part of the quick reaction team and secure centers during canvassing of votes.

They will be deployed starting May 13.

Hortillosa said the police officers will be sent to all polling centers including in the hinterland barangays of Cagayan de Oro to ensure a successful elections on Monday.


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