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SC fails to issue TRO on airtime limit rule

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02:50 PM February 12th, 2013

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February 12th, 2013 02:50 PM

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MANILA, Philippines—The Commission on Elections (Comelec) can still impose its new airtime limits on political advertisements after the Supreme Court deferred the issuance of a temporary restraining order against its implementation.

During the high court’s regular en banc (full court) session, the high court instead ordered the Comelec to comment on the petition filed by GMA7 and TV5.

GMA7, in its 56-page petition said Comelec Resolution No 9615 and its amendment Resolution No. 9631 are both “too restrictive.”

TV5, on the other hand said the new rule is “vague” because it failed to provide for a definite manner in which aggregation shall be made “thus making it difficult or impossible for media outlets to comply while subjecting them to possible criminal liability and loss of franchise permits.”

Under the rule, at the start of the campaign period which is Tuesday, (Feb. 12), all national candidates will have 120 minutes in all TV networks and 180 minutes in all radio stations. Local candidates, meanwhile, have 60 minutes in all TV networks and 90 minutes in all radio stations.

The two petitions have been consolidated by the high court and have been assigned to Associate Justice Diosdado Peralta.

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