DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Commission on Election (Comelec) said the conduct of the midterm election in the city and the rest of the region was a success despite the problems encountered by some voters on Monday, Election Day.
The Comelec said it completed the canvassing of the results and the proclamation of the winning candidates in the city and for the three districts at around 8:40 PM on Tuesday, May 14.
The Comelec completed the canvassing and the proclamation of winners earlier, contrary to the expectations it would take a week to complete enormous tasks.
In an interview, Davao City Election Officer Atty. Krisna Samantha Caballero told reporters on Tuesday that they completed the canvassing earlier.
The completion of their work is faster as compared to their experience in the 2016 election when it took two days to complete the canvassing and the proclamation of winners, she added.
“We’ve done it beyond because we are expecting one week. It was scheduled one week,” Atty. Caballero said.
She also told reporters of the problems they encountered while completing their tasks, to include the problems during the transmission of votes.
The delay, Caballero added, was due to the heavy rain on Monday, especially in the third district of Davao City.
The rain forced them to ask the teachers to bring the SD cards in the canvassing place.
There are also areas that they did not anticipate having a weak smart signal that affected the transmission process.
“But in spite of all that, our teachers are very patient and very efficient to help us. They even hold the line even if it was raining hard just to send the SD cards here for the manual uploading,” Caballero added.
She also clarified that despite the many reports of problematic Voters Registration Verification Machines (VRVMs) still it did not affect the election process.
Unexpected things happen despite the fact that the machines were in good condition during the testing and the final sealing, she added.
“We have technicians that gave attention to the problems that’s why some of the problematic VRVMs were around (were already fixed) after lunch,” Caballero said.
Atty. Caballero also took note of the low turnout of voters for this year’s midterm polls as compared to 2016 elections.
A week before the election, Caballero said they expected for 70 percent to 80 percent turnout.
“As we monitor the election process, we’ve seen so many new voters who joined this year’s election to exercise their right,” she added.
In the Canvass Report for Davao City, 635,806 voters out of the total 984,604 voters actually voted on Monday.
A Duterte victory
The three children of President Rodrigo Duterte all won in their respective positions, the mayoralty, vice mayoralty and the representative for the first congressional district of Davao City.
Incumbent Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio garnered 580,058 votes, a landslide victory against her opponent, independent candidate Jun Marcellones who only managed to get 4,262 votes from the three districts of Davao City.
Mayor Sara is in her second term as the mayor of the city and currently the chairperson of the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP), a political alliance formed in 2018.
Newbie candidate and the youngest among the Duterte siblings, Sebastian “Baste” Dutere won the vice mayoralty race with 557,769 votes, while the eldest son of the President, Paulo “Pulong” Duterte was declared winner as the representative for the first district of Davao City with 197,024 votes.
Pulong Duterte defeated his two opponents for the post, candidates Rex Labis with 2,121 votes and Susan Uyanguren with 5,118 votes.
Pulong resigned as vice mayor in 2017 out of “delicadeza” after critics dragged his name into the smuggling of P6.4-billion worth of shabu from China through the Bureau of Customs and the public squabble with his daughter Isabel Duterte.
Despite the difficulties they encountered during the campaign period, members of the Makabayan bloc lauded the continued support of the people of Davao City to the party-list groups.
Makabayan senatorial bet Neri Colmenares obtained 25,644 votes in Davao City.
The Bayan Muna Party-list whose first nominee is Atty Karlo Zarate gained 9,762 votes, the Gabriela Women’s Party whose second nominee is Bai Ali Indayla also got 4,161 votes, Anak Pawis Party-list whose first nominee is Ariel Casilao with 1,196 votes.
Other progressive party-list such as the Kabataan obtained 1,385 votes while Act Teachers Party list gained 2,881 votes.
Malicious red-tagging of the members of the Makabayan party-lists by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) prevailed before and during the campaign period for the midterm polls.
The group also reported the harassment, threats, force surrender, surveillance, killing and other forms of human rights violations done to their members.
Progressive groups in Davao City had close ties with President Duterte especially during the early days of his administration.
The relationship turned sour when the group called for the end of the administration of Duterte due to his failure to fulfill his promises during the campaign and the continuing implementation of “anti-poor and anti-people” policies. (davaotoday.com)