Sulu mayoral bet opposes transfer of polling centers PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 May 2013 11:19

JOLO, Sulu  – A United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) mayoralty candidate  in this province yesterday  asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec)  not to transfer the polling centers from at least five barangays in the municipality to avoid a possible  “disenfranchisement of voters”  in the coming polls.

Hadji  Ahmad A. Nanoh, a leading mayoralty candidate in Pangutaran, Sulu yesterday filed a petition  with the Comelec central office Manila, claiming among others that  Comelec Resolution No. 9683, promulgated on May 3,  would result to a disenfranchisement of voters in  the municipality om elections day.

Nanoh said moving the polling centers in barangays Lantog Babag, Tubig Sallang, Kehi Niog, Patutol, and Tonggasang  is “unrealistic” since  voters  will have to travel a  distance of about 30 to 40 kilometers  just to reach  the new  polling centers  located at Barangay Pandan Niog.

Worse, he said, Pangutaran town does not have a land transportation. The people in the municipality only use seacraft to transport themselves from one village to another, he added.

Nanoh said the five villages have some 3,032 registered voters  in at least 25 polling precincts  distributed in  the five affected villages.

Pangutaran is a 4th class municipality in Sulu and has a registered population of 26,211 people residing in 16 villages - Alu Bunah, Bangkilay, Kawitan, Kehi Niog, Lantong Babag, Lumah Dapdap, Pandan Niog, Panducan, Panitikan, Patutol, Se-ipang, Simbahan (Pob.), Suang Bunah, Tonggasang, Tubig Nonok and Tubig Sallang

Comelec said the move  is aimed to free the voters from terrorism, harassment or  undue risks during  election day on Monday, but Nanoh claimed otherwise. He said there was no reported election related incident in the five villages during the 2010 elections.

The five villages are relatively peaceful and free from any terrorism and political harassment  coming  from any political camp, he said.

Under  Comelec Resolution  no. 9683  voting centers  of Barangays Luma Dapdap and Panitikan have been moved from Pandan Niog Elementary School to Barangay Simbahan or Poblacion.

The voting center of Barangay  Tubig Sallang has been moved from Simbahan or Poblacion to Pandan Niog.

Polling centers of Barangays Se-ipang, Kawitan and Suang Bunah have been moved from  Pandan Niog Elementary School at Barangay Niog to Tubig Maasin Elementary School at Barangay Pandan Niog.

Polling center of island Barangay Tonggasan has been moved  to Tubig Maasin Elementary School at Barangay  Pandan Niog  located at the mainland of the town.

The polling centers of Barangays  Lantong Babag, Patutol and Kehi Niog, all located at the  up-tip portion of municipality has been  moved to Tubig Maasin Elementary School at Barangay Pandan Niog, the down most portion of the municipality.

Nanoh  expressed optimism that Comelec would see the merit of  his  opposition to the movement of precincts to  new sites and  will immediately recall the implementation of the  transfer. — Nonoy E. Lacson