By Leslie Ann Aquino
An official of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) is not discounting the possibility of the Jolo cathedral bombing affecting the voter turnout of the Febuary 6 Bangsamoro Organic Law plebiscite.
Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said some voters may feel worried about their safety.
“There will be those who will be worried of their safety,” he said in a press briefing Wednesday.
But Jimenez believes the terror attacks will not affect the choice or decision of voters.
“Even though there are those afraid of their safety, their votes won’t change,” he said.
“When they do find themselves at the polling places, they will still vote the way they want. And that is what is really important,” added Jimenez.
On Sunday, at least 20 people were killed and several others wounded in the twin explosions that rocked the Jolo Cathedral in Sulu.
The bombings came just days after the January 21 Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) plebiscite. The Comelec later proclaimed the ratification of the BOL by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).
Another plebiscite will be held on February 6, for the province of Lanao del Norte, except Iligan City; the municipalities of Aleosan, Carmen, Kabacan, Midsayap, Pikit, and Pigkawayan in the province of North Cotabato; and the 28 areas contiguous to any of the Bangsamoro core areas, where either the local government of such area, by way of a resolution; or at least 10 percent of the registered voters in a local government unit, by way of a petition, asked for inclusion in the plebiscite.
Expected to participate in the February 6 plebiscite are some 673,983 registered voters.