Com­elec warns vs pre­ma­ture cam­paign­ing

Sun Star Bacolod - - Top Stories - BY TERESA D. ELLERA

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.*

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