President Rodrigo Duterte does not only want the barangay elections postponed in October.
Duterte also wants to end the term of all barangay officials and replace them by his appointees.
Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno in an interview, during the opening of the 15th meeting of the Asean Senior Officials Responsible for Information at the Convention Center in Bacolod City.
The President does not want the barangay election to be financed by drug lords.
It was not the first time that the barangay elections were postponed it was supposed to be held last year but it was rescheduled for October this year, Sueno said.
Their terms have already ended so their posts can be declared vacant, he added.
Under Duterte’s plan, all barangay posts will be declared vacant in October and persons not involved in drugs will be appointed in their place, Sueno added.
If the barangay elections would proceed as planned, the winners might be financed by drug money.
Sueno assured that they would get inputs from the Department of the Interior and Local Government, non-government organizations and groups supporting the President on this plan.
Asked if those from the opposition would be given a chance to be appointed, he replied: This is politics. How could that be?
Sueno denied that the move was being done to strengthen the political hold of the President in the country.
This is to clean the barangays of leaders who are involved in drugs and who are corrupt, he said.
This is not being done in support of the President or any party but to eliminate drugs and corruption, he added.
There was no mention about postponing the Sangguniang Kabataan elections.
Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano said he was not in favor of the proposal to again postpone the barangay elections and Duterte’s plan to appoint the barangay officials himself was unconstitutional.
Alejano also said that the barangay captains should be elected so they can be replaced by qualified ones.
The President has been making announcements about martial law because he has a dictatorship mentality, he said.
The people should be allowed to vote. He thinks that it will not be healthy if we continue to postpone the barangay elections, he ended.
The President has launched a nationwide campaign against illegal drugs, which has brought a mounting death toll of more than 7,000 persons.
Some years ago, we were already a narco-politics state, the President told around 1,300 municipal mayors in his speech aired by government network PTV-4.
“When can we expect to have clean elections, free of the corrupting influence of the money from drugs?
This year? The president told Senate President (Aquilino Koko Pimentel III) and (House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez) to tell legislators that if we hold the barangay elections now we’re dead.