Eyes peeled on 7 LGUs in Cebu for poll vi­o­lence

The list was re­leased dur­ing the Re­gional Joint Se­cu­rity Con­trol Cen­ter’s first meet­ing on Dec. 6 Con­cerned agen­cies dis­cuss se­cu­rity prepa­ra­tions for the 2019 midterm elec­tions PRO 7 will start re­as­sign­ing po­lice of­fi­cers who have rel­a­tives run­ning for

Sun.Star Cebu - - FRONT PAGE -

Twenty-nine towns and cities in Cen­tral Visayas are un­der tight watch for their his­tory of elec­tion-re­lated vi­o­lence.

Law en­forcers will mon­i­tor 10 towns in Ne­gros Ori­en­tal; six in Bo­hol, six in Siqui­jor, four in Cebu, and one each in Metro Cebu.

These ar­eas were in­cluded in the elec­tion watch­list in the 2013 and 2016 elec­tions.

The de­ci­sion to come up with the ini­tial list of elec­tion watch­list ar­eas (Ewas) hap­pened dur­ing the Re­gional Joint Se­cu­rity Con­trol Cen­ter’s first meet­ing, which was held at the Po­lice Re­gional Of­fice (PRO) 7 head­quar­ters in Cebu City on Thurs­day morn­ing, Dec. 6.

Sub­ject to change

The pres­ence of in­tense po­lit­i­cal ri­valry, armed groups and elec­tion-re­lated in­ci­dents in a place are some of the fac­tors for in­clu­sion in the Ewas.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Com­mis­sion on Elec­tions (Com­elec), Armed Forces of the Philip­pines-Cen­tral Com­mand and other gov­ern­ment agen­cies joined the dis­cus­sion on se­cu­rity prepa­ra­tions for the midterm elec­tions in May 2019.

The of­fi­cials agreed to pre­pare for pos­si­ble elec­tion-re­lated vi­o­lence.

PRO 7 Di­rec­tor De­bold Si­nas said the list of 29 towns and cities that were in­cluded in the Ewas might be changed, pend­ing the re­sult of their eval­u­a­tion on the po­lit­i­cal cli­mate in other places.

Ne­gros Ori­en­tal is no stranger to the watch­list con­sid­er­ing the pres­ence of armed groups in the prov­ince, in­clud­ing the New Peo­ple’s Army.

Placed un­der tight watch are Gui­hul­ngan City, Bais City, Si­a­ton, Ayun­gon, Can­laon City, Mabi­nay, Man­juyod, Tayasan, Santa Catalina and Zam­boan­gita.

In Bo­hol, the towns of Bue­nav­ista, Clarin, Danao, Pi­lar, Tu­bigon and In­a­banga, which had been placed in the Ewas, are back on the au­thor­i­ties’ radar.

All the six towns in Siqui­jor— En­rique Vil­lanueva, Larena, Lazi, Maria, San Juan and Siqui­jor—are also not new to the list.

In Cebu, au­thor­i­ties will mon­i­tor Danao City and the towns of Ronda, San Fer­nando and Tubu­ran, which were in­cluded in the Ewas in the pre­vi­ous elec­tion.

Com­elec 7 Di­rec­tor Rafael Olaño said they are ready for the midterm elec­tions.

The PRO 7, for its part, will start re­as­sign­ing of­fi­cers who have rel­a­tives run­ning for pub­lic posts. /

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