Farmers, local voters stage protest against Negros Oriental town mayor | Inquirer News
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Farmers, local voters stage protest against Negros Oriental town mayor

/ 10:14 PM May 11, 2022
Farmers, local voters stage protest against Negros Oriental town mayor. STORY: Farmers, local voters stage protest against Negros Oriental town mayor

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DUMAGUETE CITY, Negros Oriental, Philippines — Over 3,000 farmers, local voters, and young people from different sectors held a protest rally in Mabinay town, Negros Oriental on Tuesday, May 10, due to alleged fraud in the municipal elections.

Opposition candidate Carlo Ruiz told the Inquirer that the protesters wanted to call the attention of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to the numerous glitches reported during the conduct of the polls.

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“Those holding a rally cannot accept the results of the elections here. Corruption is rampant and ordinary persons are affected,” he said.

Ruiz said some of the votes did not reflect or go with the final transmitted election returns.

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“Many voters here are illiterate. Voters wanted immediate family members to assist them while voting. However, the electoral board prevented family members, saying only teachers can assist the voters,” he said.

The protesters also doubted the results of the elections in Mabinay town after a power interruption occurred.

Mayor-elect Ernie “Jango” Uy, the incumbent, dismissed the allegations of the protesters who he said were misinformed.

“There was no fraud and people already expressed their choice,” he said.

Police Staff Sergeant Endclint Maranan said they were now on high alert after protesters continued mobilizing more people to join them.

“We are on high alert for a possible commotion. They had been here since morning and until now they had never stopped. Now they are at the mayor’s residence” Maranan said.

Lawyer Lionel Marco Castallino, head of the Comelec in Negros Oriental, also denied any electoral fraud in the province.

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“Fraud was impossible especially since poll watchers and different organizations are tightly watching the elections,” he said.

The recounting of votes is not new in the province. In 2016, the Supreme Court asked Negros Oriental to do a recount after Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who was then running for vice president, filed an election protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.

The recount only further amplified Robredo’s win and eventually increased her lead.

Castillano was confident that there was no electoral fraud in Negros Oriental.

“I was the provincial election supervisor here in 2016. Now, I am here again. With the tight watch of poll watchers, it’s hard to say that there was fraud here,” he said.

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TAGS: #VotePH2022, Elections 2022, Ernie Uy, Negros Oriental elections
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