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Sara wants protection, legal aid for teachers in BSKE

Neil Jayson Servallos - The Philippine Star
Sara wants protection, legal aid for teachers in BSKE
Duterte made the statement as she signed an agreement with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) that provides legal assistance to teachers who will serve as members of an electoral board and other Department of Education (DepEd) personnel who will be involved in the BSKE.
STAR / Mong Pintolo

MANILA, Philippines — Teachers who will serve in polling precincts and vote canvassing during the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE) should be protected and provided with legal assistance, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte said yesterday.

Duterte made the statement as she signed an agreement with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) that provides legal assistance to teachers who will serve as members of an electoral board and other Department of Education (DepEd) personnel who will be involved in the BSKE.

“We hope that teachers who will serve in the elections will be protected from harassment, intimidation and other forms of threats to their lives,” she said.

In previous elections, teachers assigned to polling precincts have been exposed to intimidation, harassment and even killings, especially in areas where political rivalries tend to be violent.

Duterte underscored the important role of teachers in the successful conduct of the elections, calling them the frontline government representatives who will ensure the smooth flow of the election process.

“Teachers serve in elections despite the dangers they face. I don’t remember any election that didn’t have incidents of threats, assaults and attacks on teachers and their families. Teachers do this because they love the country,” she said.

Duterte thanked the Comelec and PAO for the initiative to protect and show concern for the safety and welfare of teachers.

Aside from this, the Vice President also called on the Comelec to release the allowance of teachers on time.

Of the P8.5-billion budget allotted for this year’s BSKE, Comelec Chairman George Garcia said the lion’s share would be allocated for teachers’ allowance.

Earlier this month, the budget was confirmed to have increased by P2.589 billion.

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