Inayawan chief explains blocking of HIGAL members from entering polling center  

By: Delta Letigio - CDN Digital | May 09,2022 - 06:46 PM

CEBU CITY, Philippines—Inayawan, Cebu City Barangay Captain Kirk Brian Repollo and some of his watchmen were captured in a video blocking voters wearing neon green shirts from entering the Inayawan Elementary School. 

Those who were allegedly denied entry were members of the Homosexuals in Inayawan, Gays and Lesbians (HIGAL). They said they were blocked for wearing shirts that bore the numbers “2.4.2,” which is said to be the  founding date of the group (February 2, 2022). 

HIGAL president Rodel “Deedee” Rios told CDN Digital that they felt discriminated because, although they are known supporters of Barug, they wore their shirts in support of their organization.

“Dili man ni campaign shirts. Nabastos gyod mi kay abi nga LGBTQ mi dili nami pasudlon,” said Rios. 

(Those were not campaign shirts. We really felt insulted because just because we were LGBTQ, we weren’t allowed to enter.)

However, Repollo, who is an ally of Barug’s rival, Bando Osmeña – Pundok Kauswagan, clarified that they did not block voters but only those supporters whose purpose of entry was not to vote, but to distribute sample ballots with the faces of Barug candidates, which is illegal under election laws.

He also said the number “2.4.2” are the ballot numbers of Barug candidates, Eduardo Rama, Jr., Michael Rama, and Raymond Garcia.

He said if the numbers represented the founding date of HIGAL, the numbers should have read 2.4.22 and not 2.4.2.

“That is a campaign material, so that is campaign related kay ang mga tawo sad nag distribute man sad og mga sample ballots nga bearing those numbers,” Repollo said.

“Dapat i-prevent nato ang kato sila even inside the school nagsul-ob og ingon ato nga t-shirt and ilang gi distribute sulod sa eskwelahan,” added the village chief.

Lawyer Mae Junica Tores, one of the members of the legal team of Partido Barug, said that they intervened with the commotion at the Inayawan voting center.

She claimed that Repollo harassed her during the intervention, saying he pushed her.

“Medyo naay harassment nahitabo kay iya ko gitulod-tulod ganina so mao to siya. They were insisting nga campaign materials ang mga t-shirts sa atong mga supporters pero it’s not. In a legal point of view, it’s not. It’s just a number, it doesn’t say anything,” said Torres.

The legal team of Barug is planning to file election charges against Repollo for blocking voters’ entry to the polling center.

/bmjo

READ MORE:

Cebu province elections: Around 50 VCMs malfunction but Comelec says ‘so far, so good’ 

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TAGS: Cebu City elections 2022, Cebu City politics, cebu news, HIGAL, Homosexuals in Inayawan Gays and Lesbians, Inayawan, Inayawan Barangay Captain Kirk Brian Repollo, May 2022 elections, Philippine elections

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