The regional director of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Eastern Visayas warned voters against those who use money to buy their way into office.

Regional Director Marivel C. Sacendoncillo in her talk during the DILG Voters Education Campaign recently at a popular mall here in Tacloban City, said candidates who buy votes or use violence are most apt to be corrupt. “Like in business, candidates who buy votes don’t expect to merely recover their investment but to gain a profit,” she warned voters.

Director Sacendoncillo said voters should take the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (BSKE) polls this May 14 as a chance to choose leaders who are “Matino, Mahusay at Maaasahan” (accountable, skillful, and reliable) Barangay and SK Officials. Good governance, she said would improve delivery of basic services, regain people’s support and provide a sound business climate.

She added that voters should closely examine the character and competency of those running for barangay officials, noting that Punong Barangays have the combined powers of the executive, legislative and judicial branches. They are likewise tasked to implement all laws and ordinances in the villages.

During the DILG-8 voters’ education campaign program last May 5, Comelec Assistant Regional Director Atty. Felicismo Embalsado reviewed the qualifications for candidates and pertinent rules during the barangay polls, while Supt. Angelo Pueblos, chief of the Regional Operations and Planning Division of Police Regional Office-8, updated participants on the measures being done by the agency to secure the peace.

Mr. Eugene Ramirez, executive assistant of the office of the city mayor, delivered the Welcome Remarks. The event was hosted by MOR DJ Mac Gregor “Uncle Mac” Kho. DILG staff distributed brochures on “Matino, Mahusay at Maasahang Barangay at SK officials” to mall-goers who were likewise entertained by the acoustic band Alexa and Friends and were treated to free services of a photo booth.

Videos on the voters education campaign featuring DILG Undersecretary and department OIC Eduardo Ano and DILG Assistant Secretary were played. It would be recalled that Usec. Ano had ordered the Philippine National Police to conduct intensified actions against vote buying and vote-selling.

On May 14, registered voters will be voting for one punong barangay and seven sangguniang barangay members, while youth voters will elect one SK chairperson and seven SK members. Those aged 18 to 30 years old will vote both in the barangay and SK elections. Voters are going to elect officials for 4,390 barangays in the region and more than 40,000 villages nationwide. (Myles Joseph Colasito, LGOO V/ Regional Information Officer-designate, DILG-8)

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