Monday, May 13, 2019

Why Benguet is one of the most Peaceful Provinces in the Philippines during Election?

As a citizen of the Philippines, 2019 midterm elections is my second time to cast my vote. The night before the election, all I know was to wake up early at 5 in the morning to anticipate myself on getting early to cast my vote. When I woke up on that day, I just heard the news that the duration or the timeline of the voting period starts at 6 in the morning until 6 in the evening. To my surprise, I immediately took my breakfast and then anticipated my morning routine before going straight ahead to the voting area.

When I knew about the changes in the time of the voting period, I am totally amazed. This is the first time that the country decided to expand the voting period for a certain election day. Usually, the duration for the voting period on the election day only starts from 8 in the morning until 3 in the afternoon. After the voting period, the poll watchers and officiating personnel will start counting the votes at 3 am. In this election time, the tallying of votes starts at 6 in the evening, which is really different.


First of all, some may think the Philippine politics is one of the most unique in the world. The display of foreign media about the situation in the Philippines during elections are merely bloody with some areas that experience chaos. However, the security forces across the archipelago are doing their best to contain all negative and suspicious elements to ensure public safety. Here in Benguet, having a peaceful election is a combination of public discipline and the security force's consistency in ensuring good governance in a peaceful manner makes the province a role model to other areas in the country.

I am very blessed to say that I live in an area wherein there are no intense conflicts brought about by election-related violence. I live in the province of Benguet wherein people are very disciplined and responsible enough to choose their candidates without involving into suspicious or illegal activities. Even during the election campaign period, the number of violence or election-related offenses are relatively low as compared to other provinces in the Philippines.

Another interesting thing that visitors or travelers can observe while visiting the Benguet province during election day is the discipline in disposing of wastes. I observe lesser sample ballots scattered across the streets as I am on my way towards the voting precinct where I will cast my vote. The only thing I saw was the display of electoral tarpaulin in some private areas where candidates for a public seat can display their presence to the public's eye.

The most eye-catching are the public officials and candidates who were present at the voting precincts. If you are either a local or a foreign tourist visiting our province, you will just presume the person in front is just an ordinary citizen. Little did you know that this is how humble public officials or aspiring local government servant portray themselves to the public. They do not have a bodyguard accompanying them just like a superstar celebrity in televisions attending a special event.

I am happy to show my solidarity to the country by exercising my right to vote. After casting my right, an indelible ink shaded my right index finger as a trophy for my participation in 2019 midterm elections in the Philippines.

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