MANILA -- The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said elections in some parts of Legazpi City will be moved to Tuesday following the anticipated delay on the arrival of election paraphernalia.

This even as the poll body allayed fears of more postponements.

In a press briefing at the Comelec’s command center, poll body chairman Jose Melo also reported the stalled progress of elections in Camarines Sur, Naga City and Catanduanes, citing transportation delays.

Melo said 100 percent of election paraphernalia was transported to llocos. Distribution was almost complete in Cagayan Valley except in typhoon-hit areas.

In Central Luzon, elections in Aurora are expected to be pushed back after election materials reached the provincial hall in Baler at 3 a.m. Monday.

“We have a 97 percent delivery in Mindanao and 92 to 95 percent in Visayas. The picture is getting brighter although there were delays during the process especially in Luzon. I don’t want to blame anyone for the delays yet because we want to focus in doing our jobs right,” he said.

Comelec commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal, for his part, admitted that the National Printing Office (NPO) only had 16 days to print the 52.7 million ballots for the barangay and 2.4 million ballots for the SK polls instead of the original 45-day timeline.

“As we all know, there were delays in the bidding process, that’s why we have to push back our schedule. We would have wanted to deliver all election materials by October 21 but it wasn’t the case,” he said.

Melo added the NPO used “antiquated” and “slow” printers, which further delayed the process.

Under Comelec Resolution 9078 issued last Sunday, voting starts from 12 noon Monday and ends at 5 p.m. if the official ballots, accountable forms and other election paraphernalia will arrive at its designated polling center before 12 noon.

The same resolution said that voters within 30 meters from the polling precinct would still be accommodated if it is already past 5 p.m.

But if the election materials will arrive beyond 12 noon Monday, the election shall be postponed and reset on October 26 or October 27.

The election officer in the designated polling precinct is the only authorized person to announce the suspension of elections and the date of resetting of elections.

Meantime, the Comelec reported 100 percent opening of polling precincts in the National Capital Region, Northern Mindanao, Southern Mindanao and Central Mindanao.

Poll body spokesman James Jimenez said they are still consolidating progress reports from Southern Tagalog, Mimaropa (Mindoro-Masbate-Romblon-Palawan), Bicol, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, and Western Mindanao.

“We are also trying to verify whether if it’s true that some teachers in ARMM (Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao) did not show up to serve as the board of election tellers. Reports are still sketchy at this point,” he said. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)