EXCEPT for a few technical glitches involving some vote-counting machines (VCMs), the May 9 election in Central Visayas was peaceful and successful, said Commission on Elections (Comelec 7) director Jose Nick Mendros.
The voter’s turnout of 86.09 percent in the region, higher than the 70-percent turnout in the 2013 elections, also manifested the electorate’s trust in the electoral process, he said.
Mendros credited the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for helping the poll body ensure an honest and peaceful elections.
“Voters had the confidence to vote because they know they are well secured. To our uniformed officers, we extend our heartfelt gratitude,” he said during the post-election conference yesterday.
Present during the event were officials of the PNP, Comelec, and AFP in Central Visayas.
While there are areas that still need to be improved, Mendros said the combined efforts of the government sectors and Church-based poll watchdog Cebu Citizens Involvement and Maturation for People Empowerment and Liberation (C-Cimpel) contributed to the success of the elections.
“The steps we have taken should be sustained going into the next elections. Let us not forget the challenges. The election is not about Comelec, the PNP, or the army but about the voters and candidates,” Mendros said.
“Voters shall be empowered and candidates should be educated on the true value and meaning of the right to vote,” he added.
Police Regional Office 7 director Patrocinio Comendador Jr. said they would make some adjustments to improve some security measures in the forthcoming barangay elections in October 2016.
“As we close the May 2016 elections, I’m consoled by the fact that it was conducted in an orderly and peaceful manner. In the next election, we wish there will be no more gold because it propels goons, and goons create guns,” he said.
Based on the report of the PNP, 323 persons were arrested in Central Visayas for violating the election gun ban. A total of 352 firearms were confiscated.