THE “now you hear it, now you don’t” issue about the length of tour of duty of barangay officials may finally be put to rest once the proposed measure of Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. adjusting the term limits to a longer period of time is enacted.
This developed as Marcos, chair of the Senate Committee on Local Government, on Monday filed Senate Bill 3296, to be known as “Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Officials’ Term of Office Act of 2012,” which seeks to fix the term of office of barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan officials to five years, up by two from the current three years.
Section 2 of the bill provides that “the term of office of all barangay and sangguniang kabataan officials shall be five (5) years which shall commence at noon of November 20 next following their election.” Currently, the term of office of both barangay ang Sangguniang Kabataan officials is three years.
Marcos also proposed that the next election of barangay and youth officials be synchronized on 2015 which will give the incumbent officials, elected on October 25, 2010, a holdover of two years.
Marcos noted several postponements of barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections in the past due to lack of sufficient funds to bankroll the exercise.
But clamor to change the existing 3-year term to five years has been cropping up every now and then, and normally heats up when a barangay election are approaching.
Proponents for a longer term of office argue that the current three-year stay in office of barangay officials is not enough time to finish implementation of development projects in the barangays.
“While the right of suffrage is unquestionably paramount and constitutionally protected, the benefit of holding barangay and sangguniang kabataan elections every three years rather than at a longer period is a pressing issue,” Marcos explained.
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