OCSA head advices senior citizen group to seek DILG help in resolving election hullabaloo
MANDAUE CITY, Cebu— Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) head Raul “Pokang” Cabahug advised the group of Barangay Banilad senior citizen president Manay Ben Yap to seek guidance from the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) in resolving their case on the recent senior citizen elections.
Yap, mother of Banilad Barangay Captain Greg Yap, and her fellow officers showed up at the OSCA office at the City of Mandaue City Social Welfare Services compound on Friday, January 31, 2020, as she was worried since the group of her rival, Dante Bercede, claimed they were the legitimate winners of the Senior Citizen elections in Banilad held last Sunday, January 26, 2020.
There were two senior citizen elections held in Barangay Banilad, creating quite a confusion on who are the legitimate winners of the synchronized city-wide poll.
The two elections were reportedly done by the opposing camps, one headed by Yap, the other by Bercede, who is allegedly backed by the current administration of Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes. Both won in their respective polls.
But for Cabahug, it was the group of Yap which was following the guidelines agreed upon by the Senior Citizen Presidents’ meeting held prior to the election.
He explained that in the minutes of the meeting, the incumbent presidents were tasked to choose the venue of the election.
Cabahug said Yap’s group was in the right venue where the elections should have been held, which is the Barangay Banilad Gymnasium. The group of Bercede held their elections in a private property.
Cabahug further explained that Yap’s group was attended by authorized Board of Canvassers.
According to the election guidelines, the Board of Canvassers shall be composed of a representative from OSCA, an appointed representative from the Mayor’s Office, and a representative appointed by the Senior Citizens President.
A representative from the OSCA was authorized by Cabahug to attend the elections held at the Barangay Gym.
“Ang nakakompleto sa legitimate nga Board of Canvassers mao ang grupo ni Yap kay Barangay Gym man ang venue nga gikasabotan, so didto ko nipadala og representative sa OSCA ,” said Cabahug.
(The group that has a complete legitimate Board of Canvassers was Yap’s group as the Barangay Gym was the agreed venue, thus, I sent a representative from OSCA there.)
The Barangay made a resolution that in the absence of the Mayor’s representative as member of the Board of Canvassers, the Barangay Captain shall appoint any official from the Barangay, thus, the SK President was appointed.
But Cabahug urged the group of Yap to seek the advice of the DILG on the matter. Yap’s group also wrote to the City Legal Office to help resolve the case.
Cabahug was appointed by then mayor Luigi Quisumbing as OSCA. He is expected to serve three years, which means his term as OSCA head ends in 2022, based on Section 6 of RA 9994 (Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010).
“Ako pa gihapon ang Head sa OSCA ug dili mahimo nga ilang i-void ang akong appointment, ” added Cabahug, referring to allegations that his appointment was already terminated.
(I’m still the OSCA Head and they cannot make void my appointment).
Meanwhile, Bercede, brother of Mandaue Vice Mayor Glenn Bercede, claims the results of his elections should be the legitimate one since they had representatives from the Mayor’s Office and the OSCA, although not authorised by Cabahug.
“Kami maoy giila nga grupo sa Board of Canvassers nga maglangkub sa eleksyon,” said Bercede.
(We are the group recognized by the Board of Canvassers). /bmjo
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