Public hearings on 2018 BSKE in Mindanao begin Jan. 22

MANILA -- The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is set to hold three public hearings in Mindanao starting next week to find out the views of the people in the region whether or not they want to push through with the May 14, 2018 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE).

A public hearing is exactly that � an opportunity for the public to be heard; and by public, the Comelec means ALL of the public, said Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez on his blog.

The public hearings will be held in 700 Gov. Carmins Avenue, Zamboanga City on Jan. 22; Grand Caprice Restaurant and Convention Center, Limketkai Center, Lapasan, Cagayan de Oro City on Jan. 23 and Alnor Hotel and Convention Center, Alnor Commercial Center Cotabato City on Jan. 29.

He explained that public hearing will afford all interested parties equal opportunity to be heard on whether or not to postpone the 2018 BSKE in the region.

The consultations are precisely meant to help the Commission determine whether or not the upcoming elections should be postponed in Mindanao, Jimenez said.

It is crucial for us to verify that the conditions for free and fair elections are present in spite of the persistence of Martial Law in that part of the country, he furthered.

Pursuant to Section 5, Article 1 of the Omnibus Election Code, the Comelec may 'motu propio' (on its own impulse) postpone elections in a particular location, after due notice and hearing therein, when the holding of free, orderly and honest elections should become impossible due to any serious cause such as violence, terrorism, loss or destruction of election paraphernalia, and other analogous causes of such nature.

Source: Philippine News Agency