Archive for October, 2012
By Yolanda Sotelo
DAGUPAN CITY – Have the voters from this city suddenly become conscious of their right to suffrage?
Remarque Ravanzo, city election officer, said the number of registering voters, most of them transferees from other towns, “suddenly increased” after the filing of certificates of candidacy from October 1-5 when registration was suspended.
“Since there, daily there is an average of 200 ‘residents’ who come who are either new, transferees from other towns and those who are reactivating or validating their records,” Ravanzo said.
Registration to enable residents to vote in the May 2012 elections is until October 31.
There was a big increase of registered voters this year as compared to the May 2010 elections when there were about 83,000, Ravanzo said. The figure has jumped to 91,509 as of August 22, 2012, and is still increasing everyday, he added. The Comelec updates its records quarterly and the final number of voters would be out by November.
But having “registered” does not mean they are already included in the list of voters as the list would undergo validation, Ravanzo said.
The parties may file petition to exclude “questionable voters” such as those who are not really residents of Dagupan.
“We are mandated by law to go from house to house to ascertain that each voter are really residents of that place, but we need budget and we are still waiting for instruction (from higher office),” he said.
This “phenomenon” seems to manifest the rivalry between the Liberal and the Nationalista political parties which have fielded two rival businessmen for mayor – Mayor Benjamin Lim (NP) and Vice Mayor Belen Fernandez (LP). Lim heads the Magic Group of Companies while Fernandez’s family owns the City Supermarket Incorporated.
Both companies have strings of supermarkets and malls in Pangasinan and other provinces.
The two opposing camps accuse each other of hauling voters from other towns to transfer to the city so they can vote for their respective candidates in the May 2013 local elections. The common reasons of registrants are that they or their husbands or wives are working in the city, he said.
Both camps are “tightly guarding” the registrants and to prevent troubles, Ravanzo asked the LP and NP city chair to assign their respective representatives at the Comelec office during the registration period.
Former City Mayor Alipio Fernandez, LP Dagupan chair, assigned four representatives while Lim, NP Dagupan chair, assigned six.
But only one representative of each party can stay at the Comelec office because of the limited space, Ravanzo said.
The representatives were authorized by the party leaders to “observe the conduct and registration of voters, raise issues and concerns, and interpose objections to any document deemed questionable or irregular in the matter of application for transfer and registration of prospective elector(s).”
(We received this article from a reader and we are accommodating it unedited. The reader requested that we do not publish her name- Editor)
Something funny, if it is not nauseating, is happening at the Department of Education’s Pangasinan Division I based in Lingayen.
ASINGAN- Former Senator Letecia Ramos Shahani wrote to President. Aquino that the Shahani family will always support the Liberal Party, despite Ranjit’s pronouncements that he will support Govenor Amado Espino Jr., the candidate of the National People’s Coalition in the May 2013 local polls.
By Mortz C. Ortigoza
DAGUPAN CITY – Alaminos City Mayor Hernani Braganza said if he wins as governor next year, he will call for a reduction of 300 percent burdensome real property taxes (RPT) imposed by the provincial government in Pangasinan.
“Can you imagine? A poor farmer used to pay 500 pesos a year as RPT, but because of the new RPT he is obliged to pay 1,500 pesos,” he said. (more…)
A broker of lands in the province asked why I assailed an alleged fixer at the Register of Deeds in Lingayen. “She has been helping a lot of the buyers or sellers of land there.
The 200 thousand pesos one should be paying to the BIR is lowered to 50 thousand pesos because of her connection to the top honchos of the tax office,” she told me in the vernacular. (more…)