Congress wants barangay polls synchronized with presidential election in 2016 -- Enrile

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

CEBU CITY -- Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile has said House and Senate leaders are considering the postponement of the October 2013 barangay elections to 2016.

Enrile said the postponement would synchronize the barangay elections with the presidential election, as well as give the incumbent barangay leaders three more years to pursue their projects.

”We have too many elections in the Philippines,” Enrile said at a lunch meeting with 55 Cebu City barangay captains Sunday.

”That’s why we postponed the ARMM (Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao) elections so it can be synchronized with the May 2013 elections, and we are definite on our stand to postpone the barangay election and synchronize it with the May 2016 presidential election,” Enrile said.

Enrile said they have initially agreed in the Senate that barangay officials will have a fixed six-year term with only one reelection.

His statement was applauded by the barangay captains present.

They said they favor a six-year term because three years is too short if incumbent barangay officials have lined up long-term projects.

”We accept the fact that the barangay is a very important branch of government because barangay officials are dealing directly with the grassroots. They know what exactly are the people’s problems. You are in the front line. The government must recognize that,” Enrile said.

He said postponement of the October 2013 barangay election may also pave the way for efforts to return to the two-party system.

He said the present multi-party political system is messy because a politician who is kicked out of a party can always “go to a sari-sari store to buy his or her own party.”

 

There have been legislative proposals to limit the movements of political turncoats, but so far politicians are able to hop from one party to another without any consequences.

 

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