Marawi City is set to have 2 new barangays after majority of some 16,000 voters agreed, in a plebiscite, to create new villages where several families have resettled after being displaced by the Marawi siege.
In a message to reporters, Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman George Garcia said that the Marawi plebiscite results are as follows:
For the creation of Barangay Datu Dalidigan:
Yes vote: 97.9%
No vote: 0.6%
For the creation of Barangay Boganga II
Yes vote: 95.4%
No vote: 0.3%
“Wala tayong untoward incident, walang kahit anong insiodenta na nagkakaproblema,” said Comelec chairman George Garcia, who flew to Marawi City to monitor the plebiscite.
“Kahit sa bawat presinto wala talaga, except yung haba ng pila ng mga kababayan natin,” he said.
“Kahit mahaba ang pila, pinagtitiyagaan, pinagtitiisan ng mga kababayan natin basta makaboto,” he said.
The peaceful plebiscite in the one war-torn city shows that “democracy is alive in Marawi City,” Garcia said.
While the creation of Marawi’s 2 new barangays is expected to be underway in the coming months, residents of the 2 new villages are not expected to cast ballots in the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections in October, the Comelec chief explained.
“Maaaring hindi muna sila makakasama sapagkat wala naman po tayong special registration of voters [for the new barangays,” he said.
The registration of voters of the BSKE elections ended in January 2023.
“Minarapat naming paagahin ito upang lahat ng mga issue ukol sa disqualification, patungkol sa mga nuisance candidacies… gusto na po ng inyong Commision en banc na maresolve na ito ng maaga bago pa man mag-eleksyon ng October 30,” Garcia said.
The registration of voters for the 2025 mid-term elections will open in February 2024, he said.