ZAMBOANGA CITY -- At least five barangays here have expressed intention to be part of the January 2019 plebiscite that would determine the geographic composition of the new Bangsamoro region, an official of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) here said Monday.
Lawyer Stephen Roy Cañete, District 1 election officer, on Monday named the five barangays as Busay, Landang Gua, Tumalutab, Cawit, and Arena Blanco.
Cañete said Comelec is now in the process of verifying the signatures of the residents petitioned to have their barangays included in the January 21, 2019 plebiscite.
However, the Comelec official bared that “only few are coming to the office to have their signature verified” as among the petitioners, potentially derailing the petition at once.
For instance, he noted that only 40 of the 453 signatories from Barangay Cawit have visited the local Comelec office to verify their signatures. For Arena Blanco, he said that only 12 of the 560 signatories have verified their signatures.
Earlier, the barangay chairpersons of Busay, Landang Gua and Tumalutab have denied knowledge of the petition and claimed that their signatures were falsified.
Cañete said the results of the verification will be submitted to the Comelec central office.