TABUK CITY, Kalinga – The Commission on Election (COMELEC)-Tabuk City spearheaded the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) Unity Walk, Interfaith Prayer Rally, and Peace Covenant Signing on October 6, 2023, at the People’s Gymnasium, Dagupan Centro.
The goal of the event is to promote collaboration among candidates and their supporters while discouraging political tension, violence, intimidation, fraud, or any other sort of electoral misconduct during the election season.
This endeavor is a joint effort of the COMELEC, Department of Interior and Local Government, Department of Education, Bureau of Fire Protection, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Armed Forces of the Philippines, and Philippine National Police, and witnessed by the different faith-based group leaders in the city to maintain a sense of community and solidarity in local elections.
Atty. Dick Bal-o, acting mayor, reminded the candidates of their responsibilities. And exhort them to exhibit their programs and credentials rather than engaging in electoral misconduct, saying “Saan tayo kuma maperdi iti nasagraduwan nga tinawid tayo nga peace-loving nga siyudad aglalo iti time ti election.”
After the signing of the Peace Covenant, Tabuk City Election Officer Atty Reyman Solbita led a discussion on the do’s and don’ts before, during, and after the BSKE. One of the topics covered was the use of campaign materials, such as tarpaulins and leaflets, which should be marked with “This is a recyclable material” and the precise name of the donor and the donee. A tarp should not be larger than 2×3 feet, and leaflets should not be wider than a legal bond paper.
Additionally, Solbita informed the candidates about the newly established Committee on Kontra Bigay in an effort to streamline the procedure for filing complaints about occurrences involving vote-buying. “Pictures laeng ti t-shirts nga iwaras mo kada goods ket maysa nga dakkel nga ebidensya iti vote-buying case.”
Of the 43 barangays, there are 61 polling centers in the city and 1471 BSKE candidates. By Rio Bassong