MANILA Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Director General Oscar Albayalde on Wednesday said the ongoing voting for the second Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) plebiscite is peaceful so far.
As of posting, Albayalde said the ongoing plebiscite is peaceful with no recorded untoward incident.
Citing figures from the Commission on Elections (Comelec), Albayalde said over 50 percent of the total number of voters have already casted their votes.
He said all the teachers who are assigned as election officers arrived in their areas as compared to the first plebiscite where 72 teachers failed to arrive in the voting precincts which delayed the voting. The teachers were allegedly harassed by pro and anti BOL groups.
The ongoing plebiscite covers the towns of Baloi, Munai, Nunungan, Pantar, Tagoloan and Tangkal in Lalao del Norte; and 39 barangays in the towns of Aleosan, Carmen, Kabacan, Midsayap, Pigcawayan and Pikit in North Cotabato.
Albayalde, who is now in Lanao del Norte to personally oversee the conduct of the BOL, ordered the intensified conduct of checkpoints and security measures following the three explosions in the three towns in Lanao del Norte on Tuesday.
Lumalabas na hindi dumaan sa checkpoint (ang mga suspects). So nanggaling mismo sa loob, hindi galing sa labas (In turns out that those responsible did not go through the checkpoint. So they came from within the area not from the outside), he said in a TV interview.
Albayalde added that probers have two persons of interest in the three explosions that hit the three towns in Lanao del Norte, noting the investigation on the blasts is ongoing.
Pwedeng (ang motive dito) ay pananakot dito sa ginagawang BOL (Probably the motive here is to scare away the voters in the ongoing BOL), he said.
On Tuesday, an explosion occurred in Barangay Maranding, the business center of Lala town. Another blast occurred in Kauswagan town, minutes after. Lala is 60 kilometer away from Kauswagan while Sultan Naga Dimaporo is about 20 kilometer from Lala.
Another explosion occurred at the premises of the MSU Municipal High School in Sultan Naga Dimaporo town in Lanao del Norte at about 10 p.m.
The three towns are not taking part in the plebiscite on the question of inclusion in the Bangsamoro area. Only voters in the towns of Tangkal, Tagoloan, Munai, Pantar, Nunungan, and Baloi will be participating in the plebiscite along with voters in several North Cotabato areas.
A total of 7,312 security forces from the PNP and Armed Forces of the Philippines were deployed on the ground for the second BOL plebiscite in the provinces of Lanao del Norte and North Cotabato. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency