Fil­ing of can­di­da­cies for midterm polls be­gins

Business World - - The Nation - Gil­lian M. Cortez, Camille A. Aguinaldo, Vince An­gelo C. Fer­reras, and Reuters

REELECTIONIST Sen­a­tor Aquilino Martin L. Pi­mentel III, singer-song­writer Fred­die Aguilar, and for­mer party-list con­gress­man Neri J. Col­menares were among the early birds in the fil­ing of cer­tifi­cates of can­di­dacy (CoCs) that be­gan on Thurs­day, Oct. 11, and is sched­uled to end next Wed­nes­day, Oct. 17.

Com­elec Com­mis­sioner Rowena V. Guan­zon said there will be 18,092 po­si­tions open for next year’s midterm elec­tions. Be­sides the afore­men­tioned can­di­dates for sen­a­tor, Marawi civic leader Samira Gu­toc-Tu­mawis of the op­po­si­tion Lib­eral Party, for­mer Depart­ment of Health con­sul­tant Wil­lie T. Ong, and for­mer coun­cilor Danilo Roleda of the Bi­nay camp’s United Na­tion­al­ist Al­liance also filed their can­di­da­cies for sen­a­tor. CoCs have also been be­gun to be filed for the lo­cal po­si­tions.

In an in­ter­view with Reuters,

Earl Par­reno of the In­sti­tute for Po­lit­i­cal and Elec­toral Re­forms said, “The mid-term elec­tions will test not only the pres­i­dent’s pop­u­lar­ity and strength, but if he can con­tinue to push for his agenda in the se­cond half of his term.”

The lat­est se­na­to­rial poll, by the So­cial Weather Sta­tions, showed al­lies of Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo R. Duterte still dom­i­nat­ing the Top 12. But they are ex­pected to deal with eco­nomic is­sues that have weighed down on Mr. Duterte’s own rat­ings.

Among Mr. Duterte’s Cabi­net of­fi­cials, For­eign Af­fairs Sec­re­tary Alan Peter S. Cayetano con­firmed on Thurs­day that he will run as Taguig Rep­re­sen­ta­tive in the 2019 midterm elec­tions and will seek the House Speak­er­ship if elected in or­der to push the Duterte ad­min­is­tra­tion’s vi­sion in the leg­isla­tive branch.

“With all hu­mil­ity, I will seek an­other term in my home­town Taguig and Pateros and then let’s see where it goes from there .... I will seek the lead­er­ship po­si­tion in the House but, you know, it’s a com­plex mat­ter. We have to win first in the district, and I want to fo­cus on that first. And then you have to win the trust and con­fi­dence of the whole Congress,” Mr. Cayetano told re­porters in Bali, Indonesia.

For its part, the Philip­pine Na­tional Po­lice (PNP) said it plans to pro­vide se­cu­rity as­sis­tance to “pos­si­ble can­di­dates, if they think they have threats to their lives,” said PNP spokesper­son Se­nior Supt. Benigno B. Du­rana, Jr.

“They can avail of the se­cu­rity cov­er­age ser­vices which will be pro­vided by the Philip­pine na­tional po­lice,” said Mr. Du­rana.

Mr. Du­rana added that PNP chief di­rec­tor Gen­eral Os­car D. Al­bay­alde al­ready tasked the Direc­torate for In­te­grated Po­lice Op­er­a­tions in North­ern and South­ern Lu­zon, Visayas, Eastern, and West­ern Min­danao to pro­vide ex­tra se­cu­rity mea­sures dur­ing the election pe­riod.

In this year’s elec­tions, The PNP has also tagged 7,926 barangays and 896 mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties in the coun­try as ar­eas of con­cern or election hotspots. — re­ports by

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