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PIA Press Release

Comelec XI assures clean elections

By Mai Gevera

Davao City (31 January) -- The Commission on Elections (Comelec) Regiona XI said the negative comment of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines is a sweeping generalization that should spare this region, given a clean record in the past elections.

Regional Comelec Attorney Gay Enumerables said that branding the whole agency as practicing fraud during the election proper is not helpful in promoting a good name for the Philippines.

"Eversince, this part of the country did not receive any complaints or branded as controversial election area," she said.

The general statement appeared unfair to Comelec officials in the region and even teachers who served during elections with their honest to goodness commitment to service.

Enumerables claimed that getting back the trust of the people is not an easy task. "It would require us massive information dissemination to convince people to be part in preventing fraud during elections," she said.

Meanwhile, the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has suggested some mechanism to ensure a clean elections this May.

"For starters, I urge a four-party summit between the Commission on Elections (Comelec), the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), poll watchdog groups and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to come up with a comprehensive plan on stabilizing election hot spots, focused monitoring in possible areas of fraud, transparent poll procedures, and checks on illegal spending," President Arroyo said.

She assured the CBCP and the Filipino people that her administration will police its own ranks to protect and advance all democratic processes.

Political stability. she said must stand alongside economic strength to seal the competitiveness of the Philippines and its momentum in the world arena. (PIA XI) [top]

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