A bill has been filed at the House of Representatives postponing the country’s barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections to May 6, 2024.
Rep. Joel Mayo Almario of Davao Oriental, in filing House Bill 10425, said the conduct of village and SK elections on December 5, 2022, would be impractical even as he cited “an urgent need to continue addressing the needs of the Filipinos to fully cope from the adverse effects of the pandemic.” This, Almario said, “notwithstanding the results of the (May 2022 national) election(s).”
The country will hold general elections on May 9, 2022.
In seeking a term extension of village and SK officials for another two years amid the pandemic, Almario said, “barangay officials are effectively the frontliners in the delivery of basic government services. They are the foot soldiers of the Executive. They are primarily responsible for disseminating relevant and vital information from the national government. They serve as the backbone and the first line of defense of local governance.”
“The Philippines is not spared from the worldwide woes brought by the pandemic. Both the public and the private sectors are direly affected,” he said, adding that “On the other hand, the country will be having its May 9, 2022 national and local elections as a constitutional requirement. This election will usher in new set of public officials nationwide.”
HB 10425 seeks to amend Republic Act 11462 that provides that conduct of the village and SK elections on Dec. 5, 2022.
Before the May 2018 elections, village and SK elections had been postponed twice: first, from October 2016 to 2017 and second, from October 2017 to May 2018.
Almario’s bill said “the resulting extended term of the current barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan officials will provide the fresh set of national and local officials, elected only in May 9, 2022, a mechanism of continuity in the ongoing fight against the pandemic.”
“The country cannot afford to have all new leaders in 2022, from the President of the Republic down to the last Sangguniang Kabataan official, as doing so will add more pressure to the efficient delivery of governmental services. Our collective lead against the pandemic may be threatened of sliding back,” the bill said.
“Needless to say, this bill, if enacted into law, will usher in “the energy of the new (the newly elected national and local officials) and the wisdom of the old (the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan officials).”