90,000 to vote in BARMM plebiscite

Mayen Jaymalin - The Philippine Star
90,000 to vote in BARMM plebiscite
Commission on Elections Chairman George Garcia on February 13, 2024.
STAR / Jesse Bustos

MANILA, Philippines — Up to 90,000 voters are expected to participate in a plebiscite that will ratify the creation of eight new municipalities in the Bangsamoro Special Geographic Area on April 13.

Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman George Garcia stressed the importance of the plebiscite as it would clarify areas for casting votes during the May 2025 elections.

“The filing of candidacy will be in October. We are hoping there would be clarity on which areas voters would belong,” Garcia said.

He said the eight municipalities to be ratified are no longer part of North Cotabato, but are now part of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

“If the ‘yes’ vote wins, the creation of the towns of Kadayangan, Ligawasan, Malidegao, Nabalawag, Old Kaabakan, Kapalawan, Pahamuddin and Tugunan will be ratified,” Garcia said.

The Special Geographic Area consists of 63 barangays of North Cotabato, which voted to be part of the BARMM during a plebiscite in February 2019.

The Comelec held a conference yesterday to discuss preparations for the plebiscite.

Comelec spokesman John Rex Laudiangco said prevailing security measures and peace and order efforts in the Special Geographic Area were also discussed.

The Comelec will set up 67 voting centers during the plebiscite.

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