Catanduanes officiates 5 special days for BSKE aspirants’ oath administering; first in PH

More than 5,200 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) aspirants are accommodated in Catanduanes as the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) conducts 5 special days of administering their oaths from August 21 to 25.

With the help of 11 election officers from different municipalities covering 315 barangays within the province, this initiative is the first in the Philippines to primarily focus on saving notary expenses of BSKE aspirants, without costing budget from any government office, even COMELEC.

“As far as I know, we are the only province that organized special days of administering oath. Kasi normally, ‘yung (BSKE) candidates will go to notary public (to authorize their COC),” Atty. Neil Canicula, Provincial Election Officer of COMELEC Catanduanes said.

Since the special days commenced, COMELEC Catanduanes expects that they have assisted the aspirants to decide early if they will run for office; will have a fast and convenient COC filing during the BSKE registration on August 28 to September 3; no more long queues during registration; screened most of the incorrect entries and disqualified aspirants due to age requirement; and advertent mistakes in terms of COC acceptance will be avoided.

According to Atty. Canicula, he initiated this project because the province has only 4 notary public, 3 of them are holding office in Virac – an additional expense for those who ought to travel just to have their COC notarized.

“If we put economic value sa activity, sa P100 per COC that the notary public will charge, it is more than half a million pesos. Hindi pa kasabay doon ang na-save nila sa transportation and meals going to the notary public,” he added.

Despite the administered special days, aspirants who did not avail the office’s services can still take their oath during the COC filing on the aforementioned date.

The province of Catanduanes has 203,712 registered regular voters and 83,300 SK voters for the upcoming BSK elections on October 30, 2023. | Danica Roselyn Lim

Photo courtesy: Comelec Catanduanes

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