BAGUIO CITY – Some eighty one barangays in three provinces in the Cordillera were identified by the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to be the so-called ‘hot spots’ in the forthcoming May 14, 2018 synchronized barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections because of previous history of election-related violence and incidents and allegedly influenced by the members of the New Peoples Army (NPA) operating in the remote villages regionwide.
Of the 81 identified election ‘hot spots’in the region, 36 barangays are in Abra, 25 are in kalinga and 20 are based in Mountain Province.
In Abra, the identified election ‘hot spots’are Caot, Bañacao, Malita, Lingtan, Sappaac, Zone 6, Macarcarmay, Patucannay, Sagap and Lubong in Bangued; Abang, Dugong and Tabiog in Bucay; Cardona, Calumbaya, Isit, Namit-ingan and Taping in Dolores; Poblacion, Pulot, Collago and Pang-ot in Lagayan; Bacag, Lan-ag, Guinguinabang, Sap-al and Talipogo in Lacub; Umnap, Lat-ey, Bangilo, Gacab and Nataragan in Malibcong; Namarabar in Peñarrubia; Maguyeype in Sallapadan; Alaoa in Tineg and Tabacda in Tubo.
On the other hand, the identified election ‘hot spots’ in Kalinga include Asibanglan, Apatan, Aciga, Ba-ay, Allaguia, Limos, Ballayangen, Dugpa, Bayao, Pacawit, Katabbogan and Wagud in Pinukpuk; Basao in Tinglayan; Ababa-an, Dao-angan, Mabaca, Maling and Poswoy in Balbalan; Cagaluan, Pugong, Colayo and Balatoc in Pasil and Payao, Lower Uma, Ag-agama, Western Uma and Tanglag in Lubugan.
Further, the identified election ‘hot spots’ in Mountain Province are Mainit, Guina-ang and Dalican in Bontoc; Balintaugan and Bagnen in Bauko; Tambuan and Ambagiw in Besao; Maducayan in Natonin; Bunot, Bacarri, Palitud and Boringal in Paracelis; Namatek and Napua in Sabangan; Betwagan in Sadanga, Fedelisan and Aguid in Sagada and Maket-an, Bantey, Mabalite and Dacudac in Tadian.
Based on the overall deployment plan of the PNP and AFP during the elections, some 3655 police and military personnel will be deployed in the over 1,536 polling centers that were established in the different parts of the region for the casting of votes by the registered barangay and SK voters.
Under the existing laws, rules and regulations, election ‘hot spots’ or areas of concern are identified based on their history of election-related violence and incidents and the alleged influence of the NPa rebels in their places.
Aside from the deployment of police and military personnel in the polling centers, there will also be available police and military personnel who will be in charge of quick response teams, vital government and public installations around the region while other reserve forces will be on stand by for civil disturbance management among other requests for police and military assistance related to the conduct of the political exercise.
Police, military and election officials expressed optimism that the region will be able to achieve the desired honest, orderly and peaceful elections because Cordillerans are known to be peace-loving people.