'I lied': Imee sponsors bill moving Barangay, SK polls 'to buy us time' for reforms

Jauhn Etienne Villaruel, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 14 2022 09:09 PM

Sen. Imee Marcos on Thursday, September 8, 2022. Albert Calvelo/Senate PRIB
Sen. Imee Marcos on Thursday, September 8, 2022. Albert Calvelo/Senate PRIB

MANILA — Sen. Imee Marcos on Wednesday sponsored before the Senate plenary Senate Bill No. 1306 seeking to postpone the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections from Dec. 2022 to next year. 

During her sponsorship speech, Marcos admitted she "lied" when she said in 2019 that the 2022 village polls would no longer be postponed.

"I then made a promise in full plenary, on public record, that it would be the last of the repeated postponements of the barangay elections. Today, in the immortal words of the late great Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago, let me confess as she did: I lied, I lied!" Marcos said.

According to Marcos, there are "compelling reasons why I must renege on that promise."

She cited data that barangay election since 1989 has been repeatedly postponed resulting in "an actual extension of term averaging 4 to 5 years."

Marcos said the postponement would "buy us time" to craft measures addressing the problems in the village polls.

"This proposed election postponement is a means to buy us time for a series of measures that the Committee on Electoral Reforms and People’s Participation is proposing to Congress. This is merely a preliminary measure to give us time to study and debate the deeper issues confronting the barangay and SK system under our present law," she said.

One of her proposals is to extend the terms of barangay officials from three years to six. 

"Barangay and SK officials should be extended to 6 years, permanently fixing their elections every May the year following the presidential elections," she said.

Senators Bong Revilla, Jinggoy Estrada, Francis Tolentino, and Bong Go co-sponsored the same measure. 

The House of Representatives on Tuesday approved on second reading House Bill 4673, postponing the December 2022 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE) by a year. 

The Commission on Elections earlier said should Congress postpone the Dec. 2022 elections, they must be allotted P18.441 for 2023 in order to hold the village polls. 

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