Bangsamoro plebiscite: Confrontation breaks out after polls close in Cotabato City


COTABATO CITY, Philippines – As polling precincts in Cotabato City closed at 3 pm on Monday, January 21, tensions continued to run high.

At Vilo Central Elementary School, a crowd shouts "Bawal 'yan!" whenever someone tries to enter the precinct. They contend that at 3 pm, voters can no longer enter the precinct since the precinct should already be closed. However, they had also been shouting at people entering the precinct even before 3 pm. Eventually, a policeman comes out to explain that, after 3 pm, they had been letting in, not voters, but poll watchers.

These confrontations underline how high-strung Cotabato City is because of the plebiscite.

Pia Ranada reports. –

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