Voter registration in Taal eruption-affected areas to resume on Feb. 3 – Comelec

Robie de Guzman   •   January 30, 2020   •   1123

MANILA, Philippines – The voter registration in Batangas and Cavite areas affected by the eruption of Taal Volcano will resume on Monday, February 3, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said Thursday.

In a statement, Comelec said the voter registration for the 2022 elections will resume in the following places in Batangas province due to a return to normal working conditions:

  • Alitagtag
  • Balete
  • Laurel
  • Lemery
  • San Nicolas
  • Sta. Teresita
  • Taal
  • Talisay
  • Cuenca
  • Lipa City
  • Tanauan City
  • Balayan
  • Calaca
  • Kalatagan
  • Tuy
  • San Luis
  • Mabini
  • Lian
  • Malvar

In Cavite, the poll body said that registration of voters will also resume in Alfonso, Indang, Silang, Tagaytay City, and Amadeo.

Meanwhile, the voter registration in the municipality of Mataas na Kahoy in Batangas will resume on February 10, according to Comelec.

The poll body earlier announced the suspension of the registration in areas within and beyond the 14-kilometer danger zone of Taal Volcano during its eruption.

Taal recorded 221 volcanic earthquakes in the past 24 hours — Phivolcs

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) on Tuesday (June 15) recorded a total of 221 volcanic earthquakes in Taal Volcano in the past 24 hours.

According to their latest bulletin, Phivolcs recorded 29 low-frequency tremors out of the 221, while 192 volcanic tremors occurred with durations from one to 135 minutes.

There was also an upwelling of hot volcanic fluids which resulted in plumes reaching 1,500 meters tall, drifting southwest.

As of June 14, sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions averaged 5,837 tonnes per day.

The agency previously warned residents near Taal Volcano, particularly in Agoncillo, Batangas, to wear face masks and to stay hydrated to prevent inhaling sulfur oxide.

Meanwhile, Phivolcs stated that due to the ground deformation parameters from electronic tilt, Taal Volcano Island has begun deflating in April 2021.

“The Taal region continues to undergo very slow extension since 2020. These parameters indicate overall that magmatic unrest continues to occur at shallow depths beneath the edifice,” the bulletin stated.

Alert Level 2 is still raised in the region where Phivolcs strongly recommends that entry must be strictly prohibited into Taal Volcano Island, Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone, or PDZ, especially the vicinities of the Main Crater and the Daang Kastila fissure, and occupancy and boating on Taal Lake. AAC

PNP warns against digital vote buying in 2022 polls

Robie de Guzman   •   June 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief General Guillermo Eleazar has warned the public against the possibility of digital or cashless vote buying activities in line with the 2022 national elections.

“Hindi po malabong mangyari ito dahil nakagawian na rin po ang cashless transactions lalo ngayong may pandemya. Talagang maiisip ito ng mga taong nagpaplanong manghikayat sa publiko na ibenta ang kanilang boto,” Eleazar said in a statement.

“Monitoring vote-buying activities in the 2022 elections will really be a great challenge to us but I assure the voting public that we will put in place safeguards against this practice,” he added.

Eleazar said the PNP will consult with concerned agencies, including the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), to create mechanisms to counter vote-buying via electronic money transfer services.

“Bubuo po tayo ng mekanismo hinggil dito. Pero magiging malaking tulong po kung tayo mismo ang magsumbong sa mga otoridad ng mga ganitong gawain,” he said.

The PNP chief urged voters not to engage in this kind of activity and immediately report to authorities any information about individuals using this form of electoral fraud.

Vote-buying and vote-selling are violations under Section 261 of the Omnibus Election Code, he said.

“I urge the public to be vigilant and report to authorities if they have information on vote-buying done through online platforms,” he said.

“Tulungan ninyo kaming mapanatiling malinis at maayos ang gagawing halalan,” he added.

Filipino voters will elect a new president and vice president, along with lawmakers and local government officials, in the upcoming polls set to be held on May 9, 2022.

Palace backs Sara Duterte remarks vs Leni Robredo over Davao COVID-19 case surge

Robie de Guzman   •   June 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Monday backed Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio’s statements against Vice President Leni Robredo over the surge of COVID-19 cases in Davao City.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said he supports Mayor Sara’s remark that Robredo should stop “politicking” the Davao City’s response to the COVID-19 situation.

“Tigil na muna ni VP Leni ang pamumulitika,” Roque said at a Palace briefing.

“Sasagot naman po si Mayor Sara as Mayor of Davao City kapag po, the VP ‘dares to run for president’. So, abangan po natin ang engkwentro ng dalawa. Parating naman po yan,” he added.

On Monday, Duterte-Carpio told Robredo to “refrain from giving advice” if she knows nothing about the city government’s responses against COVID-19.

Duterte also said that Robredo “should not attack the medical community of Davao City as being inactive when they have been silently suffering and working tirelessly to help save lives since March of last year.”

“The VP should avoid involving the Covid-19 surge in Davao City in her attempt at politicking. There will be a proper time to attack my performance as an LCE in this pandemic if she dares to run for President,” she added.

Robredo earlier said that Davao City should learn from the experience of Cebu City in terms of handling the coronavirus surge when it became the epicenter of COVID-19 in the country.

The vice president’s camp has yet to comment on Duterte-Carpio’s statements. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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