The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is urging the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to include tackling in the Commission's next En Banc meeting the proposal of an election watchdog group to require Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) candidates to submit their resumes.
DILG Spokesperson and Assistant Secretary Jonathan Malaya says that the National Citizens' Movement for Free Elections (Namfrel)'s proposal is laudable and should merit due consideration as it will level up the election a notch higher to give way to more competent and worthy barangay and SK leaders.
“While we follow the requirements of the Constitution for qualifications of an elective barangay and SK official, the DILG hopes that submission of biodata would be ‘given high consideration’ by Comelec En Banc as it is a beneficial supplement to a more democratic choice and selection of leaders,” says Malaya.
“The Commission is amply clothed with legal authority to grant Namfrel’s proposal in the exercise of the Commission’s mandate under the Constitution to promulgate rules and regulations,” he says.
Comelec earlier announced it had no more time to deliberate on and enact a policy on the matter but said there was no harm in complying with the DILG’s suggestion.
In its Twitter account, the Commission tweeted “this will help you in informing and educating voters in voting wisely come campaign period.”
The DILG Spokesperson says that the Barangay and SK campaign period is yet to happen on May 4 to May 12 “so there is still enough time for all barangay and SK bets to comply with a proposed Comelec resolution, should the Commission grant our proposal.”
Malaya previously clarified that the DILG will not recommend a template or format of resumes and it will be up to the barangay and SK candidates what they will disclose to the public.
“We join the Commission in your desire to ensure that aside from conducting an honest and orderly elections, the voting public should be informed of the capacity, integrity and competence of the candidates for them to vote more judiciously,” he emphasizes.
In the meantime, the DILG urges all barangay and SK candidates to voluntarily submit their biodatas and campaign platforms to the Comelec “if only to show that they are among the matino, mahusay at maasahang (accountable, skillful, and reliable) barangay and SK future officials.”
For a registered barangay voter, he or she will be voting for one punong barangay and seven sangguniang barangay members.
Meanwhile, 15 to 17 years old register voter will vote in the SK elections for one SK chairperson and seven SK members. As for 18 to 30 years old voters, they will vote both in the barangay and SK elections.
The barangay and SK elections on May 14 is to be held in more than 40,000 villages nationwide except all barangays in Marawi City, which is considered by Comelec as a ‘special case’ as the city is still being rehabilitated after a five-month siege by local armed group in 2017.
Three months after the May 14 elections, the Commission will assess Marawi if elections can already be held there. For the meantime, incumbent officers in Marawi are on hold over status.
The filing of certificate of candidacy (COC) in the Barangay and SK elections began on April 14 and will run until April 20, 2018. The election period also began on April 14 and will end on May 21. Gun ban and prohibited acts in relation to election are now in effect.