Comelec warns vs premature campaigning
PROVINCIAL election supervisor Jessie Suarez reminded the candidates for the May 13, 2019 elections that there should be no premature campaigning until the campaign period starts even if they have already filed their Certificate of Candidacy (COC).
“They can campaign for their advocacy because that is freedom of expression. They can hold meetings and they can even post campaign materials,” Suarez emphasized.
However, he said that once the campaign period starts, all the campaign materials shall be removed and that candidates should follow the Commission on Elections (Comelec) rules and regulations.
“If they don’t remove the campaign materials that would be tantamount to violation of election rules,” Suarez said.
The campaign period for candidates for senator and party-list groups participating in the party-list system of representation is from February 12 to May 11, 2019, with campaigning prohibited on March 28 (Holy Thursday) and March 29 (Good Friday). Meanwhile, the campaign period for candidates for members of the House of Representatives and elective regional, provincial, city and municipal officials will run from March 30, 2019 to May 11, 2019.
The Comelec designates the Common Poster Areas where candidates can post their campaign materials with the specified size of the poll office.
Suarez also reminded the candidates to complete all the requirements and completely fill out their COC before filing them so that everything will run smoothly.
He also emphasized that since the role of Comelec field offices is only ministerial, they have to accommodate and accept all COCS and it would be up to the Legal Department to act on petitions and status of candidates in previous elections who failed to submit their Statement of Expenditures and Contributions (Soce).
He warned that failure to submit Soce could be a basis for perpetual disqualification from running in any elective positions.*