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Candidates for the NegOcc pledge to handle the May 9 elections in a peaceful manner.

On Thursday, 15 candidates running for various positions in Negros Occidental signed a peace bond with the Philippine National Police (PNP) in preparation for the May 9 national and municipal elections.

The activity, which took place at the Kapanalig Hall of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office in Camp Alfredo M. Montelibano Sr. here, came ahead of a meeting of the Provincial Joint Security Control Center, which included the Philippine Army, the PNP, and the Commission on Elections.

The candidates were congratulated for their involvement by Col. Leo Pamittan, the police provincial director, who administered the oath and led the signing rituals.

“The NOCPPO will do all possible to ensure a calm and orderly electoral process,” he stated.

The two rivals to reelectionist Governor Eugenio Lacson, lawyer, and former Bacolod City Lone District Rep. Juan “John” Orola and Ma. Socorro Sibulan, were among those present.

After testing positive for coronavirus illness in 2019, Lacson is currently in isolation (Covid-19).

Vice gubernatorial candidate Jonry Gargarita was also present, as were reelectionist Third District Board Members Andrew Montelibano and Manuel Frederick Ko and their opponents Antonio Barello Jr. and Tukoy Occida; reelectionist Fourth District Board Member Jose Benito Alonso and challenger Cleo Gaudite; and reelectionist Fifth District Board Member Jose Benito Alonso and challenger Cleo Gaudite.

Reelectionist Fifth District Board Member candidates Hernan Gatuslao Vista, Rolito Espinosa, Patrick Montilla, and Anthony Occeo were among those who attended.

Reelectionist Third District Rep. Jose Francisco Benitez was present, as were former vice governor and board member of the Sugar Regulatory Administration Emilio Bernardino “Dino” Yulo and former village chief Anthony “Macoy” Javelosa of Aguisan, Himamaylan City, who are both running for the Fifth District.

The candidates participated the symbolic signing of the covenant, which incorporates the norms and laws related to the Commission on Elections resolutions controlling the conduct of clean, honest, accurate, meaningful, and peaceful elections, after taking their oath before Pamittan.

The ceremony also included Provincial Elections Supervisor Roberto Salazar and Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, head of the Army’s 303rd Infantry Brigade.

Mohamad Abdul Aparesio, on behalf of Dar-Aldikhr Islamic and Guidance Center Imam Omar Betita; Fr. Francisco Perez, on behalf of Bishop Patricio Buzon of the Diocese of Bacolod; and Pastor Felix Tapang, the PNP interfaith coordinator, gave prayers.

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