Police to check reports of vote buying in Iloilo

By Tara Yap

ILOILO CITY—The Western Visayas police is validating reports of vote buying in Iloilo province.

“We continue to receive reports that some candidates are distributing money and grocery items,” said Police Brig. Gen. John Bulalacao, Western Visayas police chief.

Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao (PNP / MANILA BULLETIN)
Police Brigadier General John Bulalacao (PNP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Bulalacao said he has been receiving text messages that the items bearing pictures of Iloilo 4th District Rep. Ferjenel Biron and Iloilo Vice Gov. Christine Garin were being distributed in Igbaras and Miag-ao towns. Biron is running for governor while Garin is seeking reelection.

“These are raw information that needs to be validated,” Bulalacao told the media.

Several pictures and videos online show that residents in several towns receiving packs of bihon with the photo and name of Biron.

Bulalacao said distributing money and items are considered vote buying, a violation of the Omnibus Election Code.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it has so far not received reports of vote-buying.

Jose Nick Mendros, Comelec regional director for Western Visayas, said his office has not received any such complaints.