MANILA (UPDATE) -- Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes announced Tuesday that the poll body has decided to postpone the barangay elections in Zamboanga City because of security concerns and floods.
Brillantes said the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Department of Education and local government units agreed to postpone the barangay elections, as the city has yet to recover from the recent floods and the armed conflict involving Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters under Nur Misuari.
The Comelec noted the extensive damage brought about by the recent crisis where school buildings have been destroyed or are still being used as evacuation centers because of heavy flooding.
Brillantes said the city is in no way ready for the conduct of the elections scheduled on October 28.
Details of the postponement will be discussed during an executive session scheduled before November 30, the day of expiration of the term of current barangay officials.
Brillantes said they are hoping that the elections in Zamboanga City will be held before November 30.
Meanwhile, Brillantes said elections in neighboring provinces Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi have also been affected by the crisis in Zamboanga since the city serves as the staging area for all the election equipment for the three provinces.
He said contingency measures are being put into place to be able to safely ship the equipment to the provinces.