BOL campaign kicks off in December
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By Mayen Jaymalin, Philippine Star
MANILA, Philippines — The campaign period for approval of the Bangsamoro Organic Law kicks off in December, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has announced.
In a resolution, the Comelec said the campaign period for the Bangsamoro plebiscite would start on Dec. 7 and end on Jan. 19. Two days later, or on Jan. 21, the people in the plebiscite area will vote on whether to approve or reject the law, which provides for the creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The Comelec will supervise the conduct of an information campaign, including those for indigenous communities, women, youth, religious, professionals and the public and private sector employees in every barangay, municipality, city and province where the plebiscite will be conducted.
Information dissemination and public advocacy initiatives by the other government or non-governmental groups or individuals shall also be allowed during the campaign period.
Every barangay within the plebiscite area are also directed to hold at least one assembly or “pulong-pulong” during the campaign period to enlighten the voters about the law.
The poll body has set the plebiscite period from Dec. 7 until Feb. 5. During this time, the carrying of firearms or other deadly weapons is prohibited as well as the transfer of officers and employees in the civil service and the suspension of any elective provincial, city, municipal, or barangay official.
From Jan. 20 to 21, the ban against the sale, purchase and use of intoxicating liquor will also be imposed. The ban also applies to giving and accepting free transportation, food and drinks.
The plebiscite on Jan. 21 will start at 7 a.m. and close at 3 p.m.
A favorable result in the plebiscite, both for the areas proposed for inclusion as well as their mother units, shall result in their inclusion to the new region.
Aside from the current provinces under the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, other areas being eyed for inclusion are 39 barangays in North Cotabato, six municipalities in Lanao del Norte, and the cities of Cotabato in Maguindanao, and Isabela in Basilan.