DILG, Bantayan police prepare for Despi’s ouster
AMIDST the tug-of-war for the mayoralty seat in Bantayan town, police are anticipating protest actions that could lead to violence, especially when the order for incumbent Mayor Arthur Despi will be implemented by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).
Bantayan police chief Stephen Amamag-id, however, said the town remains peaceful and there are no reports of rallies that are in the offing.
Chief Insp. Amamag-id said the DILG in the province already coordinated with them.
“Wala pa man ang order nga pakanaugon ang mayor (Despi) as per DILG information. Continuous lang ang atong coordination sa DILG,” Amamag-id said.
(There is still no order for Mayor Despi to step down as per DILG information. Our coordination with DILG is still continuous.)
There were no signs of rallies or protests being planned specifically in the town plaza and municipal hall.
Mayor Despi continues to hold office at the municipal hall. His political rival Ian Christopher Escario was proclaimed mayor by the Comelec last Monday. Bantayan Vice Mayor Tony Montemar has dipped his fingers into the fight and filed a Quo Warranto challenging Escario’s right to the mayoralty seat.
The conflict arose when the Comelec First Division rendered a resolution canceling Despi’s candidacy on a technicality, which was upheld by the Supreme Court and is now final and executoryAmamag-id said that the people of Bantayan are aware of the situation.
“Pero kami sa police mag-expect gihapon ming naay gubot mahitabo. Aron usab ma-anticipate nato atong lakang sa maong situation,” Amamag-id added.
(But for the police, we still expect trouble to erupt. This way, we are able to anticipate our action if the situation worsens.)
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