Official: 'Wait-and-see’ on SK abolition

COMMISSION on Elections (Comelec) Negros Occidental supervisor lawyer Jessie Suarez said they are still awaiting the final decision on moves to abolish the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK).

He, however, said the proposed abolition of the SK and the virtual postponement of its elections on October 28 this year, is advantageous to the Comelec.

"We have already finished the list of voters and the printing of the ballots will be in Manila," Suarez said.

The poll body had started printing the ballots for the regular barangay elections also set on October 28, and there is an order to extend the posting of the lost of certified qualified voters until September 30, he said.

Suarez said his office is also waiting for the arrival of their supplies for the printing of the official voters list.

The printing of ballots for the SK is now on hold because of the moves to postpone it, he added.

If the whole legislative process is hastened before Congress adjourns by September 28 and President Benigno Aquino III signs it, then it will be postponed, Suarez explained.

"The moves to abolish the youth body is disadvantageous for those would- be candidates especially for those who already spent money during the registration,” he further said.

Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. is proposing for an indefinite postponement of the October polls, or until 2016, without holdovers.

Brillantes pointed out that if the SK officials would be allowed to stay, they would continue to receive the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) estimated to be P6 billion a year, representing 10 percent of the entire IRA earmarked for barangays.

“If there is a holdover, those who won in the SK elections in 2010 will already be overage by 2016. They are no longer qualified. Actually by October 2014, none of them are aged 18,” he said.

The House Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms voted to postpone the polls until the last Monday of October 2016.
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