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Isabela solon: Barangay execs elated with approval of bill postponing village polls

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“Zero politics, zero distractions, all work.”

This, according to Isabela Rep. Faustino “Inno” Dy V, summed up the sentiments of barangay leaders in the country after the House of Representatives approved House Bill 4933, which moves the barangay and SK polls originally scheduled next year to December 2022.

The vice chairman of the House committee on local government, one of the primary authors of the measure, said officials of the Liga ng mga Barangay (LNB) expressed their gratitude to the leadership of the House for prioritizing the measure.

“They are very grateful to House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano for heeding the President’s call to fast-track this bill,” Dy said.

“Barangay leaders say that the postponement of the barangay polls will now allow them to focus on serving their constituents,” he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte had earlier announced in his fourth State of the Nation Address that rescheduling the barangay polls was a priority measure of the administration.

Dy, who served as LNB President before joining the House, said that with three more full years in office, barangay officials “will now be able to plan and execute projects over longer time frames.”

“Two resources are critical here: time and finances. Now that our barangays have both, they will be in a better position to aid and complement the efforts of the local and national governments in the delivery of basic services,” he said.

Aside from moving barangay polls to December 2022, the bill sets the beginning of the terms of office of elected barangay and SK officials on January 1, 2023 and also sets subsequent barangay and SK elections on the first Monday of December 2025 and every three years thereafter.

The bill also states that incumbent barangay and SK officials will remain in office until their successors have been duly elected and deemed qualified.

According to Dy, “with this postponement of polls now formalized and barangay personnel now free to carry out their mandate, I believe it is time to focus on measures that will improve their benefits and strengthen the barangay system.”

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