DILG urged: Appoint Maguindanao officials

The Commission on Elections on Tuesday is asking the Department of the Interior and Local Government to appoint the ad interim officials of the newly-formed provinces of Maguindanao del Norte and Maguindanao del Sur.

Comelec chairperson George Erwin Garcia said that in their legal opinion, they do not have the power to appoint officials in the newly-created provinces.

The poll body chief added that the Law Department agreed on the opinion that DILG has the power to designate officials, saying that the power of the poll body was only to conduct elections.

“Our Law Department agreed that since the Comelec’s work to have a plebiscite is over, the DILG should be the one to say who will be in charge for the time being,” Garcia said.

“Since that is covered by the Local Government Code, it is necessary for the DILG to say who should sit,” he added.

Garcia cited the provision of Republic Act 11550 that the plebiscite should be held before the 2022 National and Local Elections where it has salient provisions.

The Maguindanao plebiscite had a voter turnout of 86.93 percent or a total of 711,767 out of 818,790 who actually voted.

Of the total number of voters, 706,558 or 99.27 percent voted Yes, while 5,209 or 0.073 percent voted No.

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