Zamboanga Norte candidates sign poll peace pact

March 28, 2013 10:22 pm 

ZAMBOANGA CITY, March 28 — Top candidates for local positions in Zamboanga del Norte have signed a peace covenant, according to a press statement of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) in that province.

The signing of the peace covenant was facilitated by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Zamboanga del Norte, Commission on Election (COMELEC), Philippine National Police (PNP).

The candidates who turned up during the covenant signing were former Dipolog City Mayor Roberto Uy, who runs for governor under the Liberal Party, his running mate, Dipolog City Vice Mayor Atty. Senen Angeles, third district congressman Cesar Jalosjos of the Nacionalista Party (NP), candidate for Governor, and his running mate, incumbent Dapitan City Vice Mayor Patri B. Chan, and first district congressman Seth Frederick Pal Jalosjos who is running for his second term.

Absent during the covenant signing were Atty. Edgar Vicente Balisado – LP congressional candidate for the first district, incumbent second district congressman Rosendo S. Labad-labad of LP and his rival, incumbent governor Rolando E. Yebes of NP, third district congressional candidate Atty. Isagani S. Amatong of LP and his rival incumbent board member Johanna Jalosjos-Parreno of NP.

Nonetheless, Provincial Election Supervisor Atty. Tomas Valera said those who failed to attend the covenant signing can still affix their signatures on the document at the COMELEC provincial officeand the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The peace covenant signing, which was held recently at Camila Hotel II in Dipolog City, aimed to draw commitment from each candidate to abide by the guidelines set by COMELEC governing the conduct of the May 2013 midterm elections.

DILG-Zamboanga del Norte OIC-Provincial Director Arnel F. Gudio, praised the candidates’ support to the covenant signing and said he looks forward to a peaceful political exercise on May 13, 2013 in the province.

First Infantry Tabak Division Head, Brigadier General Ricardo Rainier Cruz III has also assured the public of the readiness of the military in the area to extend the needed support to ensure the conduct of a peaceful and orderly election.

Zamboanga del Norte is now manned by the 10th Infantry Battalion led by Col. Leonel Nicolas with more than 2,000 soldiers in detachments strategically stationed in various locations in the province.

“We’ll do everything to avoid any election-related violence. And we are ready to augment our force here if necessary. Maasahan ninyo ang tulong ng Philippine Army (You count on the help of the Army),” Cruz said.(PNA)

DSP/FMS/ABB

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