Group nixes 3rd postponement of village polls

MANILA An election watchdog asked lawmakers not to push through with their plans to postpone anew the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls set May 14 this year.

We would like to call on Congress not to proceed with its move to postpone the barangay and SK elections for the third time, the Legal Network for Truthful Elections (LENTE) said in a statement.

The group believes that it is the right time to allow the electorate to vote new village and youth officials.

It is high time that we are given the chance to elect individuals, who will govern over us in the next three years, LENTE added.

They noted that a third successive postponement of an electoral exercise is against the principle of democracy.

The conduct of regular elections is one of the core foundations of democracy as citizens exercise their right to choose who will govern over them, the group added.

LENTE said that it is also necessary to have duly-elected barangay leaders since there are several campaigns launched by the government, including the campaign against illegal drugs and the proposed shift to a federal form of government.

The people should be given the chance to vote for the candidates, who will address these problems and situations, they added.

The group said elections should push through since it will be able to test the anti-political dynasty law in the country through the youth polls.

It is time for new blood to be part of our political structure and this is where the role of SK elections and youth representation becomes important, LENTE said.

On Monday, the House suffrage and electoral reforms committee, chaired by CIBAC Partylist Rep. Sherwin Tugna, approved Deputy Speaker Gwendolyn Garcia's motion to approve the poll postponement with a vote of 14-2.

Meanwhile, 17 committee members voted in favor of Deputy Speaker Raneo Abu's motion to move the schedule of the barangay and SK elections from May 14 to October 8 this year.

Source: Philippine News Agency