Teachers’ group to monitor cheating, harassment

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TEACHERS will launch a command post dubbed “Proteksiyon sa mga Guro, Proteksiyon sa ating Boto,” to monitor reports on the harassment of public school teachers who will serve on Monday’s elections.

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The post, which will begin to operate today until Tuesday night, will document reports of harassment, cheating, intimidation, and other election-related concerns of public school teachers during the polls.

“We will work like call center agents to accommodate reports from teachers. This is our own way of helping our fellow teachers who are tasked to ensure the success of our elections on Monday,” Emmalyn Policarpio, secretary general of Teachers Dignity Coalition (TDC) said on Saturday.

Policarpio added that TDC has established hotline numbers and several mobile numbers for easier reporting. They will be assisted by law group LENTE [Legal Network for Truthful Elections] which will also provide their own hotline to answer legal questions in the field as well as the peace and human rights advocacy group, Sulong CARHRIHL.
Lawyer Kenjie Aman of LENTE said their partnership with the TDC stemmed from the recognition of their group to the significant contributions of the teachers to our country.

“We are monitoring the process and we want to make sure that the rights of each stakeholder in the elections are protected. We want to uphold the right that should be afforded to every citizen,” Aman said.

Sister Arnold Maria Noel of Sulong CARHRIHL called on the people to vote with conscience.

“The election is very important because this is the only time that the rich and the poor become equal, having only one vote. This is the best time to exercise our freedom; we should not be threatened or intimidated. Thus, our teachers should at all times be protected,” she said.

“Everyone must be a wise voter. If we vote for the wrong leaders or parties, we are to be blamed after the elections,” she added.

Policarpio said teacher-volunteers who will not sit as Board of Election Inspectors on Monday will man the command post. The post will closely coordinate with government and private agencies specifically the Department of Education, Commission on Elections, Philippine National Police, election watchdogs and the media.

Neil A. Alcober

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