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Comelec: Iloilo has most number of barangay chiefs with three terms

Iloilo topped the list of provinces with the most number of barangay chiefs who are set to finish their three-term limit this year and therefore can no longer run for re-election in the October 28 barangay elections.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) posted on its website the names of the involved barangay chiefs to inform the public that these officials "can no longer run for a fourth time in the barangay elections," said Commissioner Grace Padaca at a press briefing Wednesday.

Based on the list that was prepared by the Department of Interior and Local Government and submitted to the Comelec, Iloilo topped the list with 268 three-termer barangay captains. It was followed by Leyte with 228, Bohol with 183, Batangas with 175, and Pangasinan with 173.

Both the law on barangay elections and the Local Government Code set a three-term limit for village officials.

Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said many third-termers ran and were proclaimed for their fourth term in the 2010 elections, although he could not cite the exact number.

"Maraming nakalusot at na-proclaim na three-termers 'nung 2010. This is what we're trying to avoid," he said, adding that these overstaying officials were then disqualified by the Comelec.

The poll body said candidates exceeding three terms may be disqualified from running. But the body would still accept their certificates of candidacy (COC) during the filing of certificates of candidacy (COC) on October 11 to 17.

Overstaying barangay chiefs may then face an election offense for false misrepresentation in their COC, which could result to one to six years imprisonment and disqualification from public office, the Comelec said.

Around 54 million voters are expected to vote in the barangay polls. The Comelec has set aside 170,603 clustered precincts for it. There are 42,028 barangays in 80 provinces across the country. -- KBK, GMA News