Green areas can still be under Comelec control

MANILA The Commission on Elections' (Comelec) said the newly-introduced color-coding scheme does not indicate that an area will already be put under its control.

There is no color precondition needed for us to decide to put a specific area under Comelec control, said Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez in an interview Friday last week.

He said that any area may be placed under Comelec control if the situation calls for it.

"It does not mean that just because you are 'red' area, you will likely be under Comelec control. At the same time, nothing is stopping a 'green' area from being placed under Comelec control, Jimenez said.

He, however, noted that if the area is classified as 'red' it would likely be a Comelec controlled-area.

Comelec control means that the situation there is somewhat critical. More likely, it will pass through being a 'red' area, Jimenez said.

He said Comelec may place an area under its control when there is intense political rivalry between or among candidates, political factions, or parties; or the presence of paramilitary forces, private armies, or terrorist groups.

If under Comelec control, it is more intense, more direct, and the Comelec is more involved in the activities in the area, he added.

Last week, the Comelec said it is planning to adopt a color-coded "hotspot" system, in coordination with the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, that will be used in the upcoming Barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (youth council) polls.

Under the proposed scheme, code green would mean the area has no problem and cause for concern; while code yellow will mean that the area has seen its fair share of political unrest.

The code orange will indicate the presence of armed groups, such as secessionist groups and private armed groups; while code red are those deemed as critical areas. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency