By ARTHA KIRA PAREDES
COTABATO CITY— The Department of Interior and Local Government in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao is collaborating with election watchdogs and all local peace and order councils in the region to monitor the barangay elections on Monday.
In separate letters to the Citizens Coalition for ARMM Electoral Reforms, Inc (C-CARE) and the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) dated October 24, Regional Secretary Anwar Malang asked both watchdogs to work with the department “as far as the different election activities is concerned in this coming barangay political exercise.”
The letters were addressed to C-CARE chairman Salic Ibrahim and PPCRV National Chairperson Henrietta de Villa thru Mindanao Coordinator Father David Procalla.
The regional DILG earlier organized its Regional and Provincial Monitoring Teams, and said it wanted to partner with the watchdogs and contribute to “the achievement of honest, orderly and peaceful elections,” the letter read.
Leaders of both PPCRV and C-CARE told VERA Files earlier this month they expect the barangay elections to be more contentious, one reason being that the elections will revert to the manual system. They fear that the ills of previous elections—ballot-box snatching and intimidation—could resurface.