Police eye 63 areas in Central Visayas as possible election hotspots

Published February 24, 2022, 1:09 PM

by Calvin Cordova 

CEBU CITY — Authorities are monitoring 63 areas in Region 7 that may be placed under the election watchlist areas (EWAs).

Police Col. Josefino Ligan, chief of the Investigation and Detective Management Division of the Police Regional Office-Central Visayas (PRO 7), said that the 63 areas are under close monitoring due to election-related incidents that happened there in the 2016 elections.

Ligan said that PRO 7 has yet to submit a list of areas to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) recommending to be placed under EWAs.

He added that so far, no election-related incidents have been recorded in the region.

“There were shooting incidents but these were not election-related,” said Ligan.

Police Col. Glenn Mayam, chief of PRO 7’s Intelligence Division, said the presence of New People’s Army (NPA) is one of the factors that a certain area will be considered an election hotspot.

Mayam added that the police will recommend to the Comelec to place an area under EWAs if there is an ongoing activity in which the NPA is asking for permit to campaign from politicians.

Mayam said the the Regional Joint Security and Coordinating Center will continue to hold meetings to discuss the region’s security preparations for the May elections.