The Diocesan Electoral Board (DEB) of the Diocese of Dumaguete is now getting ready to begin massive voters’ education campaigns and training on poll watching in the different barangays and parishes in its area of coverage.
This comes after an estimated 200 volunteers from the different parishes of the Dumaguete diocese completed a one-day seminar/training Saturday in preparation for the May 9 synchronized polls.
The Diocese of Dumaguete covers the towns and cities of Negros Oriental from Basay to Jimalalud and the entire island-province of Siquijor.
According to Msgr. Julius Perpetuo Heruela, DEB convener, those who completed the recent seminar-training include parish coordinators and volunteers who will echo the same lectures and training to more voters at the parish and barangay levels.
During Saturday’s activity, acting Provincial Election Supervisor Atty. Lionel Castillano, led a team from the local Commission on Elections (COMELEC) for a lecture in relation to the May 9 elections as well as the hands-on training on the use of the Vote Counting Machine (VCM).
DEB members who had completed training by the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) in Manila last month also presented the national scenario in relation to the May polls, a module on voters’ education and election monitoring.
Dumaguete Bishop Julito Cortes and OIC provincial police director Sr. Supt. Harris Fama came in the afternoon to meet and talk to the participants.
Bishop Cortes lauded them for their spirit of volunteerism, noting that it is not an easy task that they are undertaking during the election period and making a sacrifice for the common good.
Sr. Supt. Fama assured that the police chiefs will be available at the parish level trainings when needed.
Msgr. Heruela announced that the trainees are encouraged to echo what they had learned on Saturday, however, the DEB is also ready to deploy its teams of speakers and trainers to the parishes.
As for the towns of Jimalalud, La Libertad and Vallehermoso and the cities of Guihulngan and Canlaon, all in Negros Oriental but are not covered by the Diocese of Dumaguete, Msgr. Heruela said the DEB will be coordinating with the Diocese of San Carlos to which they belong.