Comelec spokesman John Rex Laudiangco. Photo from COMELEC
Comelec spokesman John Rex Laudiangco. Photo from COMELEC

THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) will focus on the security aspect of the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE), Comelec spokesman John Rex Laudiangco said on Monday.

He said the commission was closely coordinating with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other law enforcement agencies to enhance the security template they used in 2022 for implementation in the October 30 polls.

"We have noticed that the electoral contest in the barangay (village) has become something personal. So we will enhance our template in 2022. Our PNP and AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) will go down to the barangay to ensure that the elections will be peaceful," he said.

Laudiangco said they were also monitoring the areas declared as hotspots.

The PNP earlier said it was closely watching 48 armed groups that may disrupt the October elections.

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The PNP did not disclose where those groups are and the extent of their operations, but said that they were in close coordination with the Comelec as they start their security preparations, particularly in so-called areas of concern.

In a related development, Laudiangco said the Comelec has finished printing all 92 million ballots for the October polls.

"They are all packed and sealed already for distribution several days before the Barangay and SK elections," he said. "We are now 100 percent ready for the October 30 village and SK polls."

"We have only two remaining things to do: the deployment of ballots and training of our teachers," he said.

Laudiangco reiterated that the BSKE will be done manually, except in several areas where the automated system of elections would be pilot-tested.