Oct. 28 polls declared a holiday
Delon Porcalla (The Philippine Star) - October 2, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The day of the barangay elections, Oct. 28, is a special non-working holiday.

President Aquino, in signing Proclamation 656 declaring the holiday, noted that it is important to give people the fullest opportunity to participate in the local elections and exercise their right to vote.

The proclamation was signed on Sept. 25, according to the Presidential Communications Operations Office.

Aquino earlier directed law enforcement agencies to coordinate and cooperate with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to ensure free, orderly, honest, peaceful and credible barangay elections.

The directive was issued by virtue of Memorandum Order 56 signed by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr.

The Comelec, through its Resolution 9731 (s. 2013), requested the concurrence of the President in the deputization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other law enforcement agencies, in line with the barangay elections.

“Pursuant to Section 2 (4), Article 9-C of the Constitution, the Comelec is empowered to deputize, with the concurrence of the President, law enforcement agencies and instrumentalities of the government, including the AFP, for the exclusive purpose of ensuring free, orderly, honest, peaceful and credible elections,” part of the memorandum order read.

PNP chief Director General Alan Purisima supported the proposal to postpone the holding of barangay elections in Zamboanga City, while residents are trying to rebuild after the devastating clashes of government troops with Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) rebels for more than 20 days.

Purisima said he has ordered the Western Mindanao Regional Police (Region 9) to coordinate with the Comelec for the postponement of the barangay polls in Zamboanga City.

“Our recommendation is to postpone the barangay elections in the entire Zamboanga City. We will be making proper recommendations with the Comelec to allow them to go back to their normal lives,” Purisima said during a press briefing in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

Although the PNP is recommending the postponement of the barangay elections in Zamboanga City, Purisima pointed out the need to include the city in the strict implementation of the election gun ban.

Under the law, gun ban will be in effect from Sept. 28 until Nov. 12, or 30 days before and 15 days after the Oct. 28 elections.

The Comelec has set on Oct. 11-17 the filing of certificates of candidacy for the barangay elections.

Purisima said among the proactive security measures laid out by the PNP is the strict implementation of a 45-day nationwide gun ban.

Comelec said they are inclined to reset the barangay elections in Zamboanga City after MNLF rebels set several schools on fire. – With Cecille Suerte Felipe

 

ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES BARANGAY C OF THE CONSTITUTION CAMP CRAME CITY COMELEC DIRECTOR GENERAL ALAN PURISIMA ELECTIONS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY PAQUITO OCHOA JR. PURISIMA ZAMBOANGA CITY
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