Without a vote, without protection



BSKE, otherwise known as the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan election may not be as headline-grabbing as the mid-term or presidential races but it is no less contentious or controversial, with local candidates, often friends or neighbors, running against one other. It can turn personal, when warring factions forget about the issues and instead, launch a barrage of what-i-know-about-you demolition attacks.

Regardless, it is an election that should not be taken for granted, if as constituents, we expect better representation and a more efficient delivery of public services.

Oct. 19 signals the beginning of the election period and in response to queries sent my way by our readers, here’s a quick dos and dont’s list for the candidates and their supporters.  I also suggest candidates to take the time to read Comelec Resolution No. 10924, which was issued on June 7, 2023. Resolution 10924 is the “General Guidelines and Other Related Rules and Regulations for the Oct. 30, 2023 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) and all succeeding BSKEs Thereafter.” 

Campaign period

During the campaign period, all candidates are expected to comply with the Fair Elections Act mandating the use of lawful election propaganda. During this period, any form of campaign materials not compliant with required dimension and that were posted outside the common poster will be considered illegal and will be summarily removed. 

Individual posters of candidates must not exceed two by three feet. 

Posters and tarpaulins are to be posted in common poster areas designated by Comelec, or in private residences, provided permission from the home owner is secured by the candidate.

Common poster area/s are designated by the election office of the city or municipality.  They are to post in their Comelec office of the LGU the designated common poster areas.

Comelec will be conducting on Oct. 20 and 27, a nationwide simultaneous “Operation Baklas” to remove unlawful campaign materials.

Public rallies are allowed provided candidates secured the necessary permits from the LGUs. Inaction of LGUs over the applications of permit to conduct meetings and/or rally within three days from filing shall be deemed approved.

Giving of t-shirts, ballers, bags, sun visors, hats/caps, umbrellas, handkerchiefs, ballpens, fans, ballers, candies and others of value is prohibited, including giving of food and drinks during and after a meeting or campaign sortie.

As per guidelines issued by Comelec, a candidate and five of his/her campaign staff may wear t-shirt with the candidate’s picture during the campaign period.

Notarized affidavit of compliance with health protocols is required to be submitted by all candidates conducting in-person campaign activity within 24 hours after the conclusion of such activity. Failure to comply with such requirement is a violation of RA No. 11332.

Election day

Campaigning at the eve of the election day and during the election day is illegal and considered an election offense.

During the election, all candidates are entitled to one watcher in every polling place or canvassing center. Candidates are prohibited to enter the polling place except to vote.

Persons allowed inside the polling place are the EB members, watchers, voters casting their votes, voters waiting for their turn to vote, voters waiting for their turn to get their ballots, and other persons authorized by the Comelec.

And the list goes on.

One will notice that the law treats BSKE with the same seriousness it affords local and national elections and their candidates. The language used is almost identical and the gravity of punishment for those who violate, no less daunting. 

What needs to be underscored is this. Your BSKE vote counts for the many issues that sooner or later, will affect your life as a resident and voter. If you opt to remain clueless or unfortunately uninvolved, blame no one next time you need a clearance or when your uncollected trash piles up or in case of a community emergency. 

BSKE may not be filled with rockstar-worthy names, but nothing beats the help of a trustworthy barangay official in times of need.  A fitting quote by Lyndon B Johnson, “A man without a vote is a man without protection.”


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Off the Beat:  Sharing a mix of some house music anthems. 


1. Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Groovejet

2. Selace - So Hooked On Your Loving

3. Cunnie Williams - Saturday

4. Mike Dunn – I Can’t Get Down

5. K London Posse – I Believe

6. Ofenbach – You Don’t Know Me

7.  Dua Lipa – Don’t Start Now

8. Booty Luv – Boogie Tonight

Click to listen to the mix:


All copyright of the songs above belongs to the artists and record labels. If you like the songs, you can purchase and download the tunes from authorized sources.