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245 bets face suspension of proclamation

MANILA, Philippines — Two hundred forty-five candidates in the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE) tomorrow are the subjects of orders of suspension of proclamation, according to the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Latest data released by the Comelec yesterday showed that five candidates engaged in vote-buying; 173 in premature campaigning and 37 cases were referred for possible administrative cancellation.

Meanwhile, 30 cases have motions for reconsideration, where 21 are facing disqualification cases, five are nuisance candidates and four have denial of due course or cancellation of certificates of candidacy.

“Those who committed violations, they are facing disqualification cases as well as suspension of proclamation even if they win in the elections,” Comelec Chairman George Garcia said in an interview yesterday.

The Comelec earlier released guidelines on how the Barangay Board of Canvassers will suspend the proclamation of the winning candidates with order of suspension from the poll body, according to Garcia.

“For the suspension order to be effective, we released guidelines,” he said.

The Comelec approved last Tuesday the suspension of the proclamation of candidates with pending disqualification charges who will win in the BSKE tomorrow.

“Please be informed that during the referendum consultation today, the commission resolved to approve the suspension of proclamation of named respondents with pending petitions to deny due course or to cancel their certificates of candidacy, to declare a nuisance candidate and for disqualification until further orders from the commission,” Comelec Memorandum 231111 read.

In an excerpt attached to the memorandum, the Comelec en banc reiterated its authority to suspend the proclamation under Section 600 of Comelec Resolution 10924.

Section 600 stipulates the Comelec division or en banc’s authority to suspend the proclamation of a winning candidate if an unresolved petition has strong evidence.

In Bulacan, a 52-year-old businessman who is running for barangay kagawad (councilor) was arrested yesterday afternoon for alleged vote-buying activity.

Reports reaching Brig. Gen. Jose Hidalgo Jr., regional police