House bills on barangay, SK polls postponement to undergo thorough review

 The House panel on suffrage and electoral reforms will study the proposals aiming to postpone the barangay and SK polls

The House committee on suffrage and electoral reforms has committed to study the proposals that seeks to postpone the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections this October 2017.

CIBAC Partylist Rep. and panel chairperson Sherwin Tugna said the committee will thoroughly look into House Bills 5359, 5361 and 5380 to ensure the rationality and constitutionality of the proposed measures. The three House bills are aimed at cleansing drug-infested villages.

Rep. Tugna added that they will weigh the intent of the bills: to address the widespread use and trade of illegal drugs in the barangays. However, he said that the committee will have to make sure that these bills do not go against the Constitution.

HB 5359, authored by Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers, calls for the postponement of both polls this year to the fourth Monday of May 2020. Under the bill, subsequent synchronized barangay and SK elections shall be held on the second Monday of May 2023 and every three years thereafter.

If the bill is passed into law, incumbent barangay officials must be removed from office, thus allowing President Duterte to appoint new officials in the barangays.

Photo courtesy of Zamboanga.com