NegOr teachers told to release remaining election return copy

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The Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) here is appealing to teachers from 120 polling precincts to release the fourth copy of the election returns (ER) from Monday’s polls for parallel counting by the citizen’s arm.

Msgr. Julius Perpetuo S. Heruela, lead convenor of the Diocesan Electoral Board of the Diocese of Dumaguete, the umbrella group of the PPCRV and the National Movement for Free Elections (NAMFREL), told the Philippine News Agency on Friday that 120 polling precincts still have not yet given the fourth copy to them.

These precincts are in Bindoy, Siaton, San Jose, Pamplona, Bais City, Jimalalud, Zamboanguita, Valencia, Bayawan City, Sta. Catalina, Tayasan, Sibulan, and Mabinay, he said.

“Out of the 1,471 clustered precincts in Negros Oriental, we lack 120 election returns because teachers who served in the electoral boards during the May 9 polls have refused to give the fourth copy to our PPCRV volunteers,” Heruela said in mixed English and Cebuano.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has mandated that the 4th of eight ERs printed during the elections be given to the PPCRV, a citizens’ arm duly accredited by the poll body, he said.

One of the reasons for the delay is that some teachers insist they were not informed or are not aware of this specific guideline, Heruela said.

But the priest pointed out that aside from this being found in the manual for teachers, the guideline is also printed on the back of the PPCRV identification cards issued to volunteers.

Lawyer Lionel Marco Castillano, the Comelec-Negros Oriental provincial election supervisor-designate, said he has advised the election officers to tell the teachers to release the fourth ER copies to the PPCRV.

Heruela is hopeful that they can ship out this weekend all ERs to the PPCRV main headquarters at the University of Sto. Tomas in Metro Manila where the parallel counting is being held.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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