Comelec begins printing of ballots for the barangay and SK elections

UNTV News   •   August 10, 2017   •   2845

IMAGE_UNTV_NEWS_080917_Andres Bautista

Comelec has begun the printing of election ballots for the local polls this year.

Comelec chair Andres Bautista said they decided to begin the printing in preparation for the October polls because the decision to postpone it has not been finalized yet.

For his part, former Comelec chair and PPRCV chairman Atty. Rene Sarmiento said Comelec has done just right given the tight schedule.

“Pending the outcome of the talks on Congress dapat po handa po tayo at nag- iimprenta, baka gahulin po sa panahon, ma-postpone man. This is nothing new. This is not new for the Comelec,” Atty. Rene Sarmiento said.

Comelec will spend around Php200-million to complete the printing process.

“Since we are printing 77.2 so it’s Php3 per ballot that’s around 231 million, for the official ballots only,” Printing Committee director Atty. Genevieve Guevarra said.

As the printing begins, the poll body is prioritizing ballots for Batanes, Caraga, Cordillera Administrative Region, regions in the north and lastly, for Metro Manila.

The agency did not include in the list printing of ballots for Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Region due to the ongoing armed conflict in the area.

Comelec targets to print a total of 100,000 to 1.5 million ballots every day for the month of August.

Come September, the agency plans to expedite the processing to accomplish two million daily output until October 9.

Overall, Comelec targets to complete the printing of the 77.2 million official ballots in the next 60 days. – Aiko Miguel | UNTV News and Rescue

Comelec seeks P9.8-B budget for 2020

Maris Federez   •   September 16, 2019

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Monday (Sept. 16) asked, during the Senate budget hearing, for a P9.8-Billion budget for 2020.

The poll body said this will cover the P5.77-Billion budget for the 2020 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE), which they have been preparing for despite President Rodrigo Duterte’s previous statement that he wants it postponed.

Comelec said Congress has to enact a law for the postponement of the BSKE.

“Ang pakiusap namin, your honor, is sana mapabilis iyong pagpasa ng batas otherwise we have no choice but to incur some expenses preparatory expenses especially so na tali po kami ng procurement law,” said Comelec Chair Sheriff Abas.

Comelec added that should the BSKE be postponed, they request for it not to be held close to the 2022 elections.

“If postponement happens it would be preferable if it would be one year before or one year after the May 2022 (elections). So, it could be either May 2021 or May 2023,” said Commissioner Antonio Kho, Jr.

The Senate budget hearing also focused on the low voter turn-out of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in the last election.

Of the five million OFWs who are qualified to vote, only 1.8 million were registered and only 18% of which actually voted.

Comelec pointed out the inadequate information dissemination for voters and the distance of the voting centers in some countries as reasons for the low voter turn-out. (from the report of Mai Bermudez) /mbmf

SC overturns decision to disqualify Camarines Norte gubernatorial bet

Marje Pelayo   •   September 13, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Voting 8-6, the Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday (September 10) granted the petition of Camarines Norte gubernatorial candidate Edgardo Tallado who questioned his disqualification by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in the last May 19 elections.

Tallado was allowed to run after the SC issued a Status Quo Ante Order (SQAO) following Comelec’s decision to disqualify him from the race.

The SC decision, penned by Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin, stated that the Court En Banc overturned the Comelec’s decision to disqualify Tallado to run in the gubernatorial race.

The SC Public Information Office will issue a copy of the decision through its website once they receive the official copy from the Office of the Clerk of Court En Banc.

Concurring with Bersamin were Justices Diosdado Peralta, Alexander Gesmundo, Andres Reyes Jr., Jose Reyes Jr., Amy Lazaro-Javier, Henry Jean Paul Inting and Rodil Zalameda.

Dissenting were Justice Francis Jardeleza, Antonio Carpio, Estela Perlas-Bernabe, Marvic Leonen, Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa, and Rosmari Carandang.

Comelec had disqualified Tallado to run due to what the poll body says as questionable years of service as governor of Camarines Norte, pointing out that should they grant Tallado’s certificate of candidacy, it would have already been his 4th term as governor.

The law provides that gubernatorial post is only limited to three consecutive terms.

However, Tallado took his case to the Supreme Court questioning the decision of the Comelec, insisting that he is still eligible to run for the May 2019 polls as he was suspended from office in 2015 and was reinstated only in 2018.

Tallado won as the governor of Camarines Norte after garnering 149,002 votes against his rival Cathy Barcelona-Reyes who had 104,635 votes.

Comelec has yet to comment on the matter as it yet to receive a copy of the SC decision. — Marje Pelayo

‘Liwayway’ further intensifies as it moves over Batanes

Robie de Guzman   •   September 3, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Severe Tropical Storm “Liwayway” continued to intensify on Tuesday afternoon, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said.

In its 5 p.m. weather bulletin, PAGASA said the tropical cyclone wind signal no. 1 is still up in Batanes as “Liwayway” continues to move over the Philippine sea east of the province.

Residents in the area were advised to take precautionary measures against potentially strong winds.

The storm was last spotted at 225 kilometers east of Basco, Batanes, packing maximum sustained winds of 110 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gustiness of up to 135 kph.

PAGASA said “Liwayway” is moving north at the speed of 15 kph.

The storm will bring light to moderate with intermittent heavy rains over Batanes and Babuyan Islands.

The state weather bureau maintains the storm is not expected to make a landfall and is seen to exit the Philippine area of responsibility as a typhoon by Wednesday evening or Thursday morning.

Meanwhile, the southwest monsoon is seen to bring scattered light to moderate rains (with at times heavy rain showers during thunderstorms) over Ilocos Region, Central Luzon, Metro Manila, CALABARZON, northern portions of Palawan (incl. Calamian Islands), Mindoro Provinces, and rest of Cordillera Administrative Region.

Residents in the said areas are advised to take precautionary measures against possible floods and landslides.

PAGASA also warned that sea travel is risky over the seaboards of Luzon due to potentially rough sea conditions.

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