By LITO RULONA
The Police Regional Office – 10 (Pro-10) is enjoining the general public to video capture suspected vote-buying activities so they could launch a more effective manhunt operation against the election violators.
This was the statement issued by Pro-10 spokesperson Supt. Lemuel Gonda that video recording through mobile cellphones would become a great help as evidence against election violators.
“There (are) police personnel assigned in every barangay to arrest possible violators,” he said.
Gonda’s statement is in response to the call made by Cagayan de Oro City Election Officer Ramil Acol that it is about time to punish vote-buyers and vote-sellers before and during the May 14 Baranngay and Sangguniang Kabataan election.
“Kadtong mga katawhan nga nakita sa violation kinahanglan nga ilang videohan aron ang tanang mga responding officers dunay basehan sa pag-arrest and filing of possible case against these violators,” he said.
He said with this new trend of having almost all individuals with a cellphone, they can managed to make some video recording then immediately asked assistance from the nearby police stations in their respective area.
“Dili nato i-divulge ang ilang identity sa nag-report,” he assured.
Gonda claimed that they already received memorandum coming from the PNP central headquarters on the request of the Commission on Elections asking all law enforcers units to help in stopping the vote-buying and vote-selling practice.
He said the regional office has already instructed all provincial and city police office to create and install the so called “Alert Teams” to respond to calls for police assistance exclusively in relation to election activities.
Based on the Omnibus Election Code, violators can go to jail for one to six years, and erring candidates could be disqualified from holding public office.
“We are also asking all police units and personnel to respond diligently (to) all call for police assistance. Or kung mahibaw-an nga dili sila ga-respond then they can be charged administratively,” he said.
He said the Pro-10 would also field separate police units on barangays identified as hotspots by the Comelec office.
“We will also install police coordinating centers to barangays (flagged) as hotspots,” he added.
Meanwhile, Gonda announced that all election paraphernalia have already arrive in Northern Mindanao Comelec office as they beef-up their security forces in guarding all offices that will be used in the coming Barangay and SK elections.