30 poll registrants face raps over false documents
Danny B. Dangcalan (The Philippine Star) - August 3, 2013 - 12:00am

BACOLOD CITY , Philippines   â€“ Thirty people will be charged with falsification of public documents for allegedly presenting false identification cards and other documents in registering for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections.

Mavil Majarucon-Sia, Bacolod City election officer, yesterday said the 30 to be charged include some minors.

However, the minors will have no criminal liability because of the Juvenile Justice Law, she added.

Sia said the people behind the falsification must be made answerable, as well as the parents of the minors, who are still under parental authority.

The documents of the 30 will be evaluated and verified during the Election Registration Board (ERB) hearing on Aug. 12, before the new list of registrants is released, she added.

She will summon to the ERB hearing those who appeared to have falsified documents and consult their legal department in Manila on the steps to be taken, Sia said.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue had confirmed that the IDs are false.

Brillantes: Flying voters will fail

Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said yesterday the biometrics system will foil flying voters in the Oct. 28 barangay and SK polls.

“I don’t think there will be a problem with the registration,” he said. “Registrants may have swarmed our offices, but we can still identify those with double or multiple registration because we have AFIS.”

AFIS pertains to Automated Fingerprint Identification System that will cross-match the digital fingerprints of voters to identify those with more than one registration.

Brillantes said the ERB will also screen registrants.

“Many of the registrants are transferees, but they do not meet the six-month residency requirements, and there are also double registrants. We will be delisting them,” he said.

The Comelec is targeting to come up with voters’ lists by Aug. 31.

Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said the public may also file a petition for exclusion against flying voters.

The ERB will also hear these petitions, he added.

Meanwhile, Brillantes said Congress must decide on the pending bill seeking to postpone the SK polls within the next six weeks.

The printing of ballots starts by the third week of September so they must know beforehand whether   the SK elections will push through, he added.

Brillantes said President Aquino must certify the bill as urgent within the next five days to speed up its deliberation.

“If he does not certify, it would be difficult to pass a law amending under the normal process,” he said.

“We are preparing for both SK and barangay, and both elections will proceed if Sen. Ferdinand Marcos’ bill will not be certified.”   

Barangays to get P68.3 billion

Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto disclosed yesterday that barangays will get a P68.3-billion share in the internal revenue allotment (IRA) next year.

Based on the proposed P2.268-trillion national budget for 2013, the total IRA for local governments would be P341.54 billion, he added.

The IRA is just part of the allocation for local governments in the proposed 2014 national budget, Recto said.

A total of 10 percent of the barangay’s P6.8-billion share in the IRA for 2014 would go to the SK.

Recto said the share of the barangays in the IRA cannot just be removed because this is provided for in the Local Government Code of 1991.

“The current IRA share of these local governments is determined on basis of internal revenue taxes collected by the national government three years ago. In short, it is a rebate to the grassroots,” he said. – With Sheila Crisostomo, Marvin Sy

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