The Commission on Elections and provincial police have recently identified the areas of concern in the province for the upcoming 2022 polls, with Escalante, Calatrava, Moises Padilla and Candoni placed under the highest category.
Negros Occidental Provincial Police office spokesperson Lt. Abegail Donasco disclosed to DNX the 18 areas of concern they have identified so far.
These are the following:
Category yellow or area of concern (possible re-organizations of private armed group). Under this is Don Salvador Benedicto town.
Category orange, or area of immediate concern (presence of private armed group that could impose serious armed threats). Under this are the cities of Victorias, Himamaylan, Kabankalan, Sipalay and the towns of Binalbagan, Manapla, Cauayan, Hinoba-an, Ilog, Isabela, La Castellana, and Toboso.
Lastly, is the Red Category or the area of grave concern (serious armed threat and history of recorded election related incidents from the past) under which are Escalante, Calatrava, Moises Padilla and Candoni.
This list however according to Donasco is not yet finalized and may change over time.
She also clarified that this list has been approved by the Joint Security Control Center headed by the COMELEC.