Thursday August 16, 2018

‘Overaged’ SK winners not to be proclaimed

A TOTAL of 69 candidates for the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) in Northern Mindanao, including 23 in Cagayan de Oro City, will not be proclaimed winners following confirmation that they exceeded the age limit for the youth council elections.

Under the law, candidates who are qualified to run for SK seats must only be between 18 and 24 years old, must be a Filipino, a qualified voter of the Katipunan ng Kabataan, and a resident of the barangay for at least a year.

He or she must also able to read and write in Filipino, English, or the local language; not convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude, and have no relatives within 2nd degree of consanguinity or affinity to any incumbent official.

In the event that these candidates obtain the highest number of votes, the Comelec will suspend their proclamation.

However, if proclamation has already been made, the Comelec will automatically suspend the effects of the proclamation.

But the Commission on Elections (Comelec), performing a “ministerial function” could not stop overaged candidates from submitting their Certificates of Candidacy, according to City Comelec Officer lawyer Ramil Acol.

Cagayan de Oro had over 109,000 registered voters for the SK elections.

Of the 69 total SK candidates across the region, 22 are from Misamis Oriental towns (excluding Cagayan de Oro), 16 are from Misamis Occidental, 7 from Lanao del Norte and one from Bukidnon.

Acol said they are still verifying who among these Cagayan de Oro overaged SK candidates won, as the vote canvassing is still going on.

Initial reports have it that some `overaged’ SK bets from Cugman and barangay 18 eventually won.

There are still no remedy or solutions issued by the Comelec, but the SK seats - if vacated -- may eventually go to the candidates with the next biggest number of votes.

Meanwhile, reports on delisted voters have already been resolved.

Acol said those who complained of not finding their names from the registered list of voters, may have already been blocked by the Comelec after registering twice in different areas.

"They can't vote for the rest of their lives now, we might even file a case against them. Many residents came here to complain but we already verified that they were indeed delisted through our automated fingerprint information system," he said.

Those who were delisted are mostly residents of the poblacion area of Cagayan de Oro.

"Overall, honest man ang pagtrabaho sa mga teachers (our teachers worked honestly), pero naa gihapon mga namalit ug boto (but there are still those who participated in vote-buying), di nato ma discount na dili 100% honest ang elections sa side sa kandidato ug botante (so we cannot discount that the election is not 100 percent honest on the side of the candidates and voters)," Acol further said.