271 Bohol barangay captains barred from re-election
by Rey Anthony Chiu
Tagbilaran City (21 September) -- NO, they did not commit any irregularity.
But since they have been elected barangay captains since 1994 and have served uninterrupted until this year, the 271 executives of Bohol's 1109 barangays are now barred from running for the same office.
The clarification also came from Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Ronaldo Puno, who himself added that "like all elective officials, the barangay officials are also covered by the three year consecutive term limit as imposed."
The DILG top man cited Section 2 of RA 9164 and said "it is not among the provisions expressly repealed by RA 9340, the law amending RA 9164 resetting the barangay and SK elections."
In an earlier advisory citing Section 2 of RA 9164, Sec. Puno said: "No barangay elective officials shall serve for more than three consecutive terms in the same position. Provided, however, that the term of office shall be reckoned from the 1994 barangay elections."
With this, barangay leaders who have been previously chosen since 1994 have accumulated 13 years of service government service with the extended terms they are now enjoying.
As this followed, the National Barangay Operations Office (NBOO) of the DILG has reported that more than in Central Visayas alone, some 859 punong barangays of barangay chairmen are banned from reelections. The number is 29 percent of 3,003 PBs in the region, records at the NBOO bared.
The 859 incumbent barangay chairmen are just a small portion however of the more than 9,000 incumbents barred from running for the same position in the coming Oct. 29, 2007 barangay elections for reasons that they are covered by the three-consecutive term limit ruled under the law, DILG records tell.
In a report to DILG Sec. Puno, NBOO Director John Castaņeda said that there are some 9,642 barangay captains out of 39,145 reported punong barangays throughout the country excluding those of Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) who are now on their third consecutive term of office.
"Under such circumstances, these third-termer incumbent barangay captains are no longer eligible to run for re-election. However, they are allowed to run as kagawad or council member," Castaņeda said.
Puno said the terms of office of barangay officials have already been extended for two years, and the present clamor is to elect a new set of barangay officials.
Meanwhile, the NBOO monitoring report showed that in terms of percentage, the National Capital Region (NCR) has the most number of third-termer barangay captains with 572 or 34 percent of 1,694 punong barangays in NCR.
However in terms of numerical data, Region VI has the most number of punong barangays serving on their last term, which is 1,133 PBs.
In the Luzon Area, in terms of percentage, Region II has the most number of third-termer punong barangays with 713 or 31 percent of 2,311 punong barangays in the region.
In the Mindanao area, in terms of percentage, Region X has the most number of third-termer barangay chairs with 573 or 29 percent of 1,975 PBs in the said region. (PIA) [top]