The Commission on Elections (Comelec) was able to conduct special elections in Tubaran, Lanao Del Sur on Tuesday despite security concerns.
Comelec Commissioner George M. Garcia said 12 of the 15 polling precincts in the said municipality were able to transmit their election returns to the Municipal Board of Canvassers (MBOC) as of 8 p.m.
“Only three have yet to transmit,” Garcia told reporters in a Viber message.
Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Regional Election Director Ray Sumalipao reported all of the polling precincts were already closed as of 7 p.m.
To note, the voting period in Tubaran started at 6 a.m. and was supposed to end by 7 p.m.
However, the polling precincts were allowed to accommodate a voter after the 7 p.m. as long as he or she is 30 meters from the voting area before the deadline.
The special elections in the 15 polling precincts located in 12 barangays opened on time on Tuesday with no incidents of hardware glitch or election-related violence.
Garcia said they doubled the number of deployed personnel of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in Tubaran due to security concerns in the municipality.
“We will not be specific. But for the entire municipality, there were many loose firearms. The PNP and AFP are trying to recover those, that is why we doubled our forces there,” Garcia said.
The poll official said they are hopeful the Certificate of Canvass (COC) containing the results of the special elections to be prepared by the Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) will be completed and sent to the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) by Wednesday.
In a notice, Comelec chairman and NBOC chairperson Saidamen B. Pangarungan will recovene at 3 pm on May 25, 2022 to continue the canvassing of the votes for party-list groups.
Poll officials earlier said the result of the special elections in Tubaran will be crucial in determining the ranking and seat allocation for party-list groups.
Comelec is targeting to proclaim the winning party-list groups by Thursday.