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BARMM Gov't, COMELEC ensure teachers' safety for upcoming BSK polls

MARAWI CITY—The Bangsamoro Government and the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) have joined hands to guarantee the safety and support of teachers serving as members of the Electoral Board in the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE).

Minister of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) Mohagher Iqbal, COMELEC Chairman George Erwin Garcia, COMELEC Executive Director Atty. Teopisto Elnas, Jr., and Bangsamoro Attorney-General and Member of Parliament Atty. Sha Elijah Dumama-Alba signed on Thursday, Oct. 19, the memorandum of agreement in Davao City, solidifying their commitment to protecting the educators during the electoral process.

“Through this Memoranda of Agreement, we affirm our commitment to support and protect our teachers who willingly step up to serve during the election period. We must provide them with the necessary support, training, and protection to carry out their electoral duties without fear or intimidation,” Iqbal said.

He emphasized the vital role of teachers in the successful conduct of the elections despite the dangers they face.

“Their (teachers) integrity and dedication are essential in upholding the sanctity of the electoral process, which is the cornerstone of a democratic society," he said.

Public schools across the Bangsamoro region will be utilized as voting centers during elections, with classrooms serving as polling precincts due to their ample and desirable space, wide availability, convenient location, and accessibility to the people.

Accordingly, the COMELEC will pay the honoraria and allowances of each service personnel and will receive P9,000-10,000.

"As frontline government representatives who will ensure the smooth running of the electoral process, we have increased their honorarium as we will be conducting a manual election, which will lead them to render more services during the election," Chairman Garcia added.

He also mentioned that the Government of the Day has a crucial contribution to a smooth and unbiased election.

"We will always consult and connect with the BARMM government, especially those in charge of the school division for us to prepare, provide materials, and be informed what's happening in polling areas during the BSK election," Garcia added.

The MOA signing signifies a collective commitment focused on a framework that ensures that the rights and well-being of teachers, supervisors, administrators, and other educational stakeholders are upheld and provided with legal assistance. (BIO/PIA Lanao del Sur)

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Apipa Bagumbaran

Assistant Regional Head

Region 10

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