B.P. Blg. 20

An Act Providing for the Organization of the Sangguniang Pampook in Each of Regions Nine and Twelve, Providing Funds Therefor, and for Other Purposes

Batas Pambansa Blg. 20

Section 1. Call of Election. The election of representatives to the Sangguniang Pampook of Regions Nine and Twelve shall be held on a date to be fixed by the President (Prime Minister), taking into primary consideration the peace and order situation in the area to ensure free, orderly and honest elections.

Section 2. Election and Campaign Period. The election period shall be fixed by the Commission on Elections in accordance with Section 6, Article XII, paragraph (c) of the Constitution. The period of campaign shall be fixed by the President (Prime Minister) but shall not be more than forty-five days immediately preceding the election, excluding the day before and the day of the election.

Section 3. Certificate of Candidacy. The provision of the 1978 Election Code on the filing of certificates of candidacy shall be applicable to the election herein contemplated. The date for the filing of certificates of candidacy shall likewise be determined by the President (Prime Minister).

Section 4. The Sangguniang Pampook. The Sangguniang Pampook in each region which is composed of twenty-one members, shall include seventeen representatives elected from the different provinces and component cities in each region, as follows:

Region IX The provinces of Basilan, one representative; Sulu, three representatives; Tawi-Tawi, one representative; Zamboanga del Norte including the Cities of Dipolog and Dapitan, four representatives; Zamboanga del Sur including the cities of Pagadian and Zamboanga, eight representatives;

Region XII The provinces of Lanao del Norte including the City of Iligan, three representatives; Lanao del Sur including the City of Marawi, four representatives; Maguindanao including the City of Cotabato, four representatives; and Sultan Kudarat, two representatives; and a sectoral representative each from among the youth, agricultural workers, non-agricultural workers and professionals of the region.

The President shall appoint an additional five representatives whenever in his judgment any other sector is not properly represented in the Sangguniang Pampook as a result of the elections.

Candidates for the position of the seventeen representatives to the Sangguniang Pampook shall be voted at large by the registered voters of their respective regions. The candidates from each province and its component cities corresponding to the number of representatives allocated under this Section, receiving the highest number of votes in the respective region, shall be declared elected.

At any time after the date of the election of the above members of the Sangguniang Pampook but not later than twenty days thereafter, the kagawads representing the youth, agricultural workers, non-agricultural workers and the professionals in the Sangguniang Bayan or Panlungsod of the municipalities and cities in every province of each region shall meet at a place and on the date designated by the Commission on Elections and subject to the supervision of the Commission or its authorized representatives, shall choose from their respective sectors the representatives of their sector to the Sangguniang Pampook.

A majority of the kagawads of each sector shall constitute a quorum for the election of the sectoral representatives. The candidate obtaining the highest number of votes in each sector shall be declared elected.

Section 5. Filling of Vacancy. Pending an election to fill a vacancy arising from any cause in the Sangguniang Pampook, the vacancy shall be filled by the President (Prime Minister), upon recommendation of the Sangguniang Pampook; Provided, That the appointee shall come from the same province or sector of the member being replaced.

Section 6. Registration of Voters. The provisions of the 1978 Election Code on registration of voters shall be applicable; Provided, however, That for the purpose of the election herein provided, the Commission on Elections is hereby empowered to order, when the necessity therefor arises, registration in the voting centers; Provided, further, That the number of days to be fixed for the purpose shall not exceed three days, the day to be at least ten days before the date of the election; Provided, finally, That the Commission on Elections motu propio or upon verified petition of any voter or election registrar, or duly registered political party or group, and after due notice and hearing, shall annul book of voters not prepared in accordance with the provisions of the 1978 Election Code or the preparation of which has been effected with fraud, bribery, forgery, impersonation, intimidation, force, or any similar irregularity.

Section 7. Manner of Election. The manner of election, including the preparation of the ballot, canvass of votes and proclamation of the winners, composition of the Citizens Election Committees and the Regional Boards of Canvassers, lawful and prohibited propaganda, expenditures of candidates and registered political parties or groups and such other matters relating to the conduct of the elections shall be governed by the provisions of the 1978 Election Code; Provided, however, That in case the number of public school teachers available to serve in the Citizens Election Committees is insufficient, the Commission on Election may appoint private school teachers, members of the Katipunan ng mga Kabataang Kawani of the Civil Commission, ROTC cadets, or members of the barangay councils.

Section 8. Convening of the Sangguniang Pampook. The Sangguniang Pampook shall initially convene upon call of the President (Prime Minister) within sixty days from the proclamation of a majority of the members of the Sangguniang Pampook.

Section 9. Rules of Proceedings. The Sangguniang Pampook shall adopt its own rules of proceedings by a majority vote of all its members. Pending the adoption of said rules, the Rules of the Batasang Pambansa shall, as far as practicable, be made applicable to the Sangguniang Pampook.

Section 10. Composition of the Lupong Tagapagpaganap ng Pook. The Lupong Tagapagpaganap ng Pook shall be composed of a Chairman and four Members who shall be appointed by the President (Prime Minister) on recommendation of the Sangguniang Pampook and who may or may not be members thereof.

Section 11. Salary of Members. Each member of the Sangguniang Pampook shall receive an annual salary of Twenty-four Thousand Pesos (P24,000.00), chargeable against Sangguniang Pampook funds.

Section 12. Appropriation. To carry out the purpose of this Act, an amount not exceeding the sum of Five Million Pesos (P5,000,000.00) already appropriated in Batas Pampook Blg. 1, Activity No. 1.1.3 in the appropriation of the Commission on Elections may be used to cover the expenses to be incurred in connection with the holding of the elections for representatives to the Sangguniang Pampook.

Section 13. Applicability of the 1978 Election Code. The provisions of Presidential Decree Numbered Twelve Hundred and Ninety-Six otherwise known and cited as “The 1978 Election Code”, insofar as they are consistent herewith, shall apply to the elections called under this Act.

Section 14. Powers of the Commission on Elections. The commission on Elections shall, with respect to the elections herein provided, exercise such powers and jurisdiction and discharge such duties as are conferred upon it by the Constitution and the law as to the election of members of the National Assembly and elective provincial, municipal and city officials.

Section 15. Transfer of appropriations, properties and assets of the Southern Philippines Provisional Government. The Southern Philippines Provisional Government shall be deemed abolished upon the convening of the Sangguniang Pampook of Regions IX and XII, and its appropriation, properties, and assets are transferred in equal parts to the Sangguniang Pampook of said regions. Its records and contracts are likewise transferred to and shall be assumed by the region to which they may appropriately pertain.

Section 16. Separability Clause. The provisions of this Act are hereby declared to be separable, and in the event any one or more of such provisions are held unconstitutional, such shall not affect the validity of the other provisions.

Section 17. Effectivity. This Act shall take effect upon approval.