Polls in Ilocos Norte 'peaceful' amid usual problems

By Leilanie Adriano

May 15, 2018, 12:51 pm

LAOAG CITY -- Despite reported commotions and alleged vote-buying in some barangays where political rivalry is intense, the synchronized Barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (youth council) elections were generally peaceful in Ilocos Norte province.

“I hope ganito lang tayo at nakita naman natin na wala namang gulo hanggang natapos. Tutal, at the end of the day, barangay naman ito. Sigurado magkakamag-anak yan, magkakapit-bahay, sila-sila rin lang at sana walang magkasakitan (I hope it would be just like this. We saw that it was peaceful till the end. After all, at the end of the day, this is at the village level and the candidates may be relatives or neighbors. Hopefully, they would not hurt one another),” Senior Supt. Cesar Pasiwen, officer-in-charge of the Ilocos Norte Police, said in an interview on Monday as authorities did not vacate their assigned precincts until the electoral board proclaimed the winners.

Unlike in previous elections where there were long queues of voters, people cast their votes smoothly, only with minor problems on the missing names of some voters who have failed to update their voting records.

On Election Day, Provincial Election Officer Alipio Castillo appealed to all candidates, supporters and voters to observe the rule of law.
On areas where political rivalry is intense, Alipio said this is just natural during elections.

"Personally, mas gusto ko na may pagpipilian ang tao kaysa sa by appointment na lang ang mga uupo na opisyal (Personally, I would rather see more choices for the people, instead of officials being put in place via appointment)," Alipio said. (PNA)