PILI, Camarines Sur – Two persons both claiming to be the rightful Punong Barangay of Atulayan, Sagnay, Camarines Sur have caused serious confusion among constituents as a result of an election protest lodged at the Muncipal Trial Circuit Court (MTCC) of Tigaon-Sagnay, Camarines Sur.
Yesterday, before the Sangguniang Panlalawigan here, Jennifer C. Banday told the members of the Provincial Board that she wants to seek guidance from the said body and to help her resolve the issue.
Election protest, revision
Records obtained from Banday say that during the October 2014 barangay elections, she was declared and proclaimed winner by the Board of Canvassers.
However, her opponent in the said election, Erlinda A. Camano, filed an election protest with the MTCC, presided by Honorable Orlando A. Martizano.
Camano was declared the winner after the revision of votes.
Said decision of the MTCC was appealed to the 1st Division of Commission on Elections (COMELEC).
After COMELEC acquired jurisdiction over the said appeal, the poll body issued a Writ of Preliminary Injunction enjoining the MTCC Judge to cease and desist from implementing the Order dated 16 May 2014.
Furthermore, the Commision also directed Erlinda A. Camano to cease and desist from assuming the position of Punong Barangay until further orders.
In the same order, the poll body stated that pending the final resolution of the case, Jennifer C. Bandan must remain the Punong Barangay of Atulayan, and if the restrained acts had already been done, the parties are ordered to maintain the status quo ante prior to the filing of the case.
The same COMELEC order was duly served to the parties concerned by the Regional Office of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Bicol.
Banday told the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan that until now, Erlinda Camano still insists that she is the duly-elected Punong barangay.
“Our constituents are confused because Camano is also holding office and performing the functions of Punong Barangay. She issues clearances, certifications, and exercises the other functions that only legitimate the Punong Barangay can perform. When I sign documents, like attendance in meeting called by the Liga ng Mga barangay, the two of us are recognized,” she related.
Banday said that she wanted to seek clarification from the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, to give their residents peace of mind as to who should be the rightful head of their village.
Provincial Board Member Amador Simando, who represents the 4th District of Camarines in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, advised Banday to avail of the legal remedies, like the filing of necessary cases against Camano.
Simando told Banday to visit the Office of the Provincial Attorney if she intends to file legal action against Camano.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM