Public school teachers still required to report on May 9 polls to serve as BEIs on election day

Public school teachers still required to report on May 9 polls to serve as BEIs on election day

MANILA, Philippines — Public school teachers are still required to report on May 9 national and local polls, as the Commission on Elections (Comelec) is not yet implementing the new law that allow them to choose if they want to serve or not during electoral exercises.

“We cannot implement it (RA 10756) anymore for 2016. We are all in this together now. We know the risks they are facing but this is for our country,” said Commissioner Rowena Guanzon in an interview.

The poll body official noted that they will not implement Republic Act (RA) No. 10756 since they already trained the teachers.

“They (teachers) have already been trained in accordance with the General Instructions for BEIs. There is no turning back now,”

On April 8, President Benigno Aquino III signed RA 10756 or the “Election Service Reform Act”, which provides that only public school teachers that are willing and available to render election service will serve as BEI members.

It added that there should be shortage of willing public school teachers, the poll body may appoint private school teachers; national government employees; Department of Education non-teaching personnel; other national government officials and employees; members of the commission-accredited citizen arms or other civil society organizations; and any registered voter of the city or municipality of known integrity and competence.

The law also gives the poll body the authority to determine if it still has material time to implement the non-compulsory election service of public school teachers in the 2016 national and local elections or not.

Some 300,000 school teachers will man the 92,509 clustered precincts nationwide on May 9.

Based on Comelec Resolution No. 10031, the chairperson and members of the BEIs shall receive a total of per diem of Php 4,500.

The amount covers three days work, including the verification and sealing of the Book of Voters, for the final testing and sealing of the vote counting machines, and for transportation allowance. PNA/