MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte said early Thursday morning that there won't be any barangay elections this year.
According to the president, he will not allow drug-tainted personalities to be elected as barangay officials. Duterte said drug money may be used if there will be elections this year.
In a press conference at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) following his official visits in Myanmar and Thailand, Duterte claimed that 40% of all the barangay captains in the country are involved in drugs.
"Forty percent of the total barangay captains are into drugs. That's my problem," Duterte said.
He revealed that he has advised lawmakers not to conduct elections in order to prevent narco-politicians from assuming barangay posts.
"Do not commit the mistake of calling elections now because narco-politics has entered into the mainstream of Philippines politics," Duterte said.
The president revealed that he is looking at appointing officers-in-charge in barangays in lieu of the current officials who were on mere holdover capacity.
Duterte said he will tap the church and the civil society for names of nominees for the barangay posts.
The president said he will ask for three nominees, who will fit the three criteria he enumerated.
According to Duterte, the nominee must not be connected with rebels, not involved in illegal drugs, and not connected to politicians.