Government agencies, NGOs join forces for peaceful BSKE 2023

Various government agencies and organizations led by Commission on Elections Regional Director Dennis Ausan sign a pledge to ensure peaceful Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections later this month. (Jennifer P. Rendon)

By Jennifer P. Rendon

Different government agencies and non-governmental organizations, together with the religious sector, have gathered to promote a safe and honest Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE).

For Western Visayas, the “Multi-Sectoral Peace Assembly for BSKE 2023” was held at the Police Regional Office (PRO) 6 headquarters at Camp Delgado, Iloilo City on Oct. 16.

It saw the participation of different government agencies like the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), Philippine National Police (PNP), the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, the Philippine Information Agency and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

The event was marked by the reading and signing of a “Statement of Commitment” to support and ensure the peaceful conduct of BSKE 2023.

The assembly concluded with the release of white doves, symbolizing hope, peace, purity and love.

Atty. Dennis Ausan, Comelec-6 regional director, said that the multipartite conference or assembly of different government agencies, which are members of the Regional Joint Security Coordinating Center (RJSCC) 6 and Committee on Kontra Bigay, together with some NGOs and interfaith groups, is a show of coordination in preparation for the 2023 BSKE.

“And as far as the Commission is concerned, we are right on track. We are right on the timetable set,” Ausan said two weeks before the Oct. 30 polls.

He said that the preparations were almost done.

“We’re wrapping up with the training of members of the election board and members of the barangay board of canvassers, as well as DepEd supervisors and support staff,” he said.

On the side of security preparations, a command conference is scheduled today, Oct. 17, which will be the last and final conference of the RJSCC prior to the election day.

“We will have a second look at the preparations that we have set before if it’s okay for execution,” he said.

On the administrative side, the Commission is awaiting the accountable forms and supplies, which have already been dispatched from Laguna on Oct. 22

Anytime this week, it will be distributed to the different offices.

“We have already talked to the power sector and they also assured us na walang problem as regards the power aspect of doing the election,” he said.

The power sector has also assured Comelec that there are contingency measures in case there would be outages that couldn’t be avoided.