Free cell phones in campaign rally

Comelec says giveaways questionable



Martell Soledad, a candidate for councilor in Valenzuela City, has added cell phones to the array of giveaways—T-shirts, baseball caps and trinkets—during election campaign rallies.

Six lucky people who attended the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA)-Tayo Na Valenzuela proclamation rally in Valenzuela on Sunday night each went home with a cell phone given away by Soledad.

Soledad was one of the last candidates for councilor to be called on stage during the rally attended by UNA senatorial candidates.

The crowd went wild after he announced his “giveaway.”

“In our place in District 2, people have become used to the fact that with Martell Soledad, scrooges, stingy and selfish people are not allowed,” he began.

“Our senators have been throwing away gifts. But, a friend visited me, and he said he would want to throw some cell phones,” Soledad said, eliciting loud cheers from the crowd.

Soledad’s staff began throwing away the six cell phones in white boxes to the crowd.

“This friend of mine, he’s from Bulacan, and he’s very kind, so he decided to donate to us those six cell phones,” he explained later. He did not say the brand or model of the cell phone.


The crowd, especially the six who caught the phones, enjoyed the treat, but is it legal, or can it be considered vote-buying?

The Omnibus Election Code defines vote-buying as “any person who gives, offers or promises money or anything of value, gives or promises any office or employment, franchise or grant, public or private, or makes or offers to make an expenditure, directly or indirectly, or cause an expenditure to be made to any person, association, corporation, entity, or community in order to induce anyone or the public in general to vote for or against any candidate or withhold his vote in the election, or to vote for or against any aspirant for the nomination or choice of a candidate in a convention or similar selection process of a political party.”

Disqualification from office and possible removal of voting rights could await candidates found guilty of vote buying.

Asked about the cell phone giveaway, James Jimenez, spokesman of the Commission on Elections, said on his Twitter account, “That’s very questionable.”

Pork barrel for all

Soledad is a cousin of Councilor Shalani Soledad-Romulo, who is running as representative in the second district of Valenzuela.

Romulo, who will run against incumbent Rep. Magtanggol Gunigundo, vowed to use the P210 million, representing the total pork barrel congressmen receive in a three-year term, for all of her constituents, and not just a selected few.

“That’s P210 million which should be seen and felt by all of us in District 2. That means assistance without biases. You should not be asked if you were with us in the election, or if you know us. If you approach us, we should help, because that fund is for all of us in the district,” she said.

Romulo, whose husband, Roman, is running for his final term as congressman for the lone district of Pasig City, vowed to provide scholarships, livelihood training, business assistance and medical support for her constituents should she win.—With a report from Jocelyn R. Uy

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  • ryan andres


    • $2931613


      • ryan andres

        mas corny siguro mga katulad mong buraot na supporter ng tangUNA brad. Isa ka siguro dun sa mga hentusang nakasikwat nung cellphone.

  • Jane Tan

    Wow… vouchers for gamot at edukasyon nagreklamo pero okay lang magbigay ng cell phone?

    • Concur_Dissent

      “testing the waters” lang yang UNA… kung lulusot na legal yung cell phone, expect a lot more “ANONYMOUS UNA FRIENDS” to be donating cell phones for “GIVEAWAYS”!!

      • Simplify1

        Tiyak may magsasabing legal yan, specially mga taong hindi naniniwalang magnanakaw si ERAP kahit na convicted na! Sama rin yung mga taong hindi naniniwalang almost 60,000,000.00 na ang kayamanan ni Binay kahit na galing ang information sa mismong SALN no filed ni Binay! Sama rin dyan ang mga taong hindi naniniwalang nag bigay si Enrile ng pork barrel sa non-existing na NGO.


        hoy Tuta ni Abnoy at mama’s Boy Roxas napanood mo ba ung Paninindigan pabor sa EVAT law ang idol nyong si BUM pag naupo yan sa Senado puro dagdag tax ang gagawing batas nyan sigurado un

      • Simplify1

        Hoy alipin ni GMA at sisip uhog ni ERAP, wrong number ka! Pabor ako sa EVAT at taasan ng taxes ang mga mayayaman!


        hoy tuta ng mga abnoy at GMA pag tinaasan mo ng taxes ang mga mayayaman sa mahihirap din nila ipapasa un thru theie product mag isip ka nga makakampi lang sa tropang abnoy at TeAM Brownout.

  • cato_the_younger

    Events like these are the seeds of corruption. If she has an election outlay that provides for cellphones, she will need to recover those expenses somehow. Give thanks for the cell phone and vote her NOT.

    • dodong1

      UNA UNA lang yan UNAHIN nating patumbahin yang mga putangUNA na yan..

      • cato_the_younger

        Mukhang na-thumbs down tayo ng nakatanggap ng cell phone.

      • Concur_Dissent

        At least mga anim na thumbs down yan!

      • dodong1

        oo nga okay lang yan mas marami naman ang thumbs up…UNAhan muna yan mga yan..huwag iboto ang mga putang UNA…

      • magiting78

        UNAhan na lang sa pag tumba dre….hehehe basta yung 3 mustketeers akin..tatalupan ko ng buhay…

      • dodong1

        magandang plano yan..he he he

  • sanjuan683

    Ang babaho ng mga candidates sa magkabila partido huwag na natin iboto ang mga iyan. Iboto natin yun mga independent senatorial candidates mga bago sila, sawang-sawa na ako sa mga trapo. Lalo na sina Abnoy at Nognog pareho lang sila mga corrupt sa daan baluktot.

  • BIGButo

    That’s the way to buy an election. Crooked people!

  • tadasolo

    What a corrupt practice and she is only running for a worthless council position. Imagine what happens to the other higher offices

    • LOLA

      si shalani naman congress kaagad ang target.ano ba ang educational background ni shalani?may rumours pa na may anak na yan.

      • magiting78

        Meron na nga, pero kung natapos meron yan mataas pinag aralan nyan, hnd ko sure kung dati syang aid ni Pinky Lacson or other senator…

  • Concur_Dissent

    Soledad is not doing anything new… this is simply the culture of UNA….just look at its leadership….

    1. They have a VP who was A SIMPLE GUY AND AN APO ENFORCER before he was pulled from the streets by Cory… now, he is so wealthy that he is richer than PNoy… how could he amassed all these wealth as Mayor?

    2. They have an ex-con VP…. need I say more?

    3. They have a VERY SENIOR SENATE PRESIDENT who can’t explain properly how a “bulk” of his pork barrel ended up with an NGO whose President could not be traced?? Even a neophite senator would now exactly where their own pork barrel went!!

    As one can see… Soledad is small time

    • Jane Tan

      The sad part is that these idiots will vote for them because come next election, they expect it to happen again.

      • Concur_Dissent

        Hopefully they wake up

      • Simplify1

        It will soon be CURTAIN CALL for the corrupt…

    • cogito728sum

      Sorry, my lengthy post is in reply to yours but did not register that way. By the way, the ‘small time’ invariably end up big time just like the OIC I mentioned above which is now one of the biggest fish swimming in the pool of corruption. So we’ve got to watch them. Merci!

  • LOLA

    nasa una team na ba si shalani soledad at si martell?

  • southernsons

    Voters beware!!! This is a sign of a kukurap na official.

  • anu12345

    The crowd, especially the six who caught the phones, enjoyed the treat, but is it legal, or can it be considered vote-buying?

    Kung ako ang kandidato, magbibigay ako ng mga sapatos. Pero para sa kaliwang paa lang. Kapag nanalo ako, saka ko ibibigay ang para sa kanan. Vote buying ba iyon?

  • LOLA

    hoy martell soledad,ilang bisis na ba na tikman si shalani ni pnoy?

  • jdelacruz13

    corruption in the making … wow giving away pork barrels . thats not theirs to give out , its something that these senatong/tongressman should know . ang KAKAPAL NG MUKHA NINYO !!!!

  • boboposter

    The crowd went wild after he announced his “giveaway.”

    Idiots! Idiots everywhere!

  • pepito gwaps

    Is it true politics is a big and good nvestment wherein you need to give first then later the return will be satisfying and overflowing…. Bato bato sa langit ang tamaan wag sanang manalo…este wag pong magalit….

  • imongredneck

    As per defined by the Omnibus Election Code, those cellphones are being used to buy votes. The timing of release of that P210 million is suspect. This is a public fund being used to influence vote. If Shalani doesn’t have an ulterior motive, then she should split this money with the other party.

    • wawa2172

      Hey Shalani is not the congressman yet, its Gunigundo kaya siya ang may say sa prk barrel. Shalani made promises on how to do with the pork and that is still seen to be true if she wins. So its Gunigundo who should convince the voters that he made used of the pork barrel properly.

  • Eddie AAA Calderon

    This is a public and open political campaign at its best in the Philipppines. I remember in 1970 when my parents came to visit me and my sister in Minnesota for the first time in their life –their first time also to visit the USA, a friend of ours took my folks to a US senatorial election meeting. My parents noticed the shirts with the picture of the democratic senatorial candidate and he told that friend of ours that he and my mother would like to have one as a souvenir. My friend who was for that US senator bought them the shirts because they were for sale to the public and not free. Because giving them away will leave an impression that the senatorial candidate was engaged in vote buying. In our country they are free.

    • $2931613

      then you better remain there in USA and not come back to the Philippines.. you are not welcome here

      • Whoopigsooee

        I don’t see why you would reply to Eddie AAA’s comment offensively. Napak-onionskinned mo naman. Inggit ka ba na nasa USA siya nakatira? His living there does not mean he loves the Philippines less than you do.

      • Eddie AAA Calderon

        Thanks for your email. Let me share to you my email to my friends all over the world. This discussion reminds me of the issue of defining what a government is or what a group is if such an association defends on the participation of the members to create its own rules and regulation.
        As I have had this opinion since I was a UP student, a government is only as good as the majority of the voters who put their officials into elected offices who will in turn appoint other officials to help them rule the country. Singapore is a small nation whose integrity and very good government is internationally known and the country has been consistently ranked as number 5 in the world for its integrity and good government. Its having a good and efficient government is based on the majority of its voters who have integrity and honesty as to reflect their character in the government they so choose to rule their country. Take for example a story related to me by a Filipino who took a trip to Singapore with his wife. He said he was astounded to know that his video cassette recorder that he left in the taxi he and wife rode to go back that night to their hotel was returned by the taxi driver early in the morning. My friend received a telephone wake up
        call in the morning from the hotel receptionist informing him that the taxi driver returned his camera but would not want to wait until my friend would say thank you to him aas the taxi driver had a passenger in his taxi. My friend also told me that if someone used the bathroom and forgot to flush the toilet after use, the person would have to pay a fine. He said mostly the culprits were perhaps visitors to the country who were not aware of this very strict rule.

        In saying this I am not implying that the governments of all countries reflect the majority of their people’s character. There are countries that won’t allow their citizens to elect officials, such as repressive and authoritarian countries, and if some countries do, they are there to show off to tell the world that their people participate in election but if they do, they are all too scared to exercise their conscience when they vote.

      • BIGButo

        There are many corrupt people in the Philippines and you know that for a fact

  • Jojo Griffin

    Hindi maganda ang propaganda ni Soledad.Yun 6 na nakakuha ng cell phones baka iboto pa yun ibang nanood na di nakakuha siguradong di ka iboboto ng mga yun.nagbigay din ba si Soledad ng Free load??..

  • cogito728sum

    I wanted to dissent from your opinion but to do so would have been escaping from the truth. And anyone who is blind to the truth fools no one but himself. Therefore, I CONCUR. Having said so, kindly allow me to add substance to your observations.

    When I first visited my homeland in 1987, after the bloodless ‘revolution’, my bosom buddy in college, confided to me something I’ve kept in strict confidence all these years since. I didn’t have the courage to divulge such matter because I don’t want to unjustly besmirch a man’s reputation. With the current political conditions and after thorough deliberations, however, I have concluded that the interest of the country, the Filipino people as a whole, far outweighs keeping such secret and not letting it known to the electorate.

    My friend, like the many local officials appointed by Cory, was only an administrative assistant to an OIC of a suburban municipality. One of his assigned tasks was to scrutinize and endorse for the OIC’s approval every expenditure of the municipality.

    At one time, he was incredulously staring at a voucher for a questionable half a million pesos transaction for his endorsement. True to himself, he confronted his boss and said, this were his exact words, “I cannot, in conscience, endorse this. This is contrary to what we fought for in the streets. If you want to approve this, it is your prerogative as the OIC. But keep me out of it.”

    One of the reasons that compelled me to reveal this, aside from the fact that we are confronted again with the choice of whom to give our assents to be our next public servants, was the recent news about a retired prosecutor dying of a badly needed surgical procedure because of the callousness of our pension offices in not extending to him, posthaste, what was legally and justly due him. It reminded me of my friend who never gave up the idealism we nurtured in college. And yet, here we are faced with candidates who can afford to bribe the electorates with not just cell phones but promises questionable to keep.

    The question I keep pondering about is this. Which is the preferable destiny for a public servant, to accumulate way beyond his and his family’s needs to the detriment of the many or to end up with not even a penny to pay the oarsman in crossing the Styx in his journey to Hades but with his name and honour intact? Foolishly, I prefer the latter.

    Folks, lets not forget the above question and to REMEMBER THE WOODS comes May 13. Merci!

    • Concur_Dissent

      I concur! Their days are numbered and their numbers are dwindling, latest SWS report has it that the anti Pnoy group is now down to 15%. They will be extinct before those Philippine turtles vanish from the face of the earth!

    • tuldok

      Are you talking about this same OIC who more than once requested my neighbor/distant relative (from a barangay in a small town) to honor a postdated check for P500 in the late and early 80s, before he was appointed (unfortunately) by Cory? This OIC had no money. Although to his credit, he was with MABINI with Saguisag et al rendering free legal aid to the marginalized sector of our society. My kababayan was the Manager of PNB in one of its branches in that suburban city. She was always approached to honor a postdated check or make it good somehow coz the future OIC has no funds to cover it- no funds for even a P500 check!. My kababayan always did him the favor, out of being a kababayan, even though they really never knew each other other before. How this man became so freakin’ wealthy is probably the most asked Billion dollar question…
      Sometimes, I tend to put the blame on Cory for making a bad choice. And she complicated that by her failure to rein on him as he started to make his way into making millions – one of the things we fought for on the first EDSA revolution

      • cogito728sum

        If it is not a $64 question only but billions, then we’re most probably referring to the same person. A caveat though. I wouldn’t put the blame on Cory. She didn’t fail the nation; it is the people expected of making the change for the better, for what was in accord with the expectations of the general public after the rapacious Marcos regime, that failed her. It is us who failed the struggles in Mendiola, Morayta, Liwasang Bonifacio, and yes Plaza Miranda. We dismally failed ourselves. Merci!

  • wawa2172

    The cellphones was thrown away tot he audience so what’s new? The six who catches it can now enjoy talk and texting for sure that is kung may pang load sila. Somehow in political campaign kanya-kanyang gimik so bahala na ang kandidato kung ano ang ipamimigay basta huwag lang barya-barya. The incumbents congressmen, mayors or councillors may have spent pork barrels for multicabs with their names printed on side or hoods of the car. Their names boldy printed on the permits of tricycles, kuliglig and PUJ’s. So ang daming paraan, so kung namigay si Soledad ang cellphones, how did it differ kung namigay ang mga kandidato nang souvenirs like t-shirts, pamaypay na cardboard, wrist band, etc. Gimik-gimik lang ito, sana sa susunod bahay at lupa na ang ipamato nang mga kandidato, malaking tulong ito sa makasalo. It doesn’t mean however that they will vote for the candidate. Sa Marawi City, Lanao provinces and towns, the candidates throws a lot of money, vote buying is so rampant and candidates gives the list to voters receiving the money of whom to vote.

  • Guest

    100 times ng cost ng 6 cellphones babawiin ng soledad na yan..Itong mga tao mababaw kaligayahan..di nila alam nanakawin pabaik lahat ng goinastos niyan sa kampanya


    Yong mga kandidatong mamimigay ng house and lot ay siguradong mananalo!

  • divictes

    Throw six SUV’s into the crowd that would really make heads turn. CP’s? Cheap yan, ginagawa lang naming trigger ng IED’s dito ang mga iyan.

  • Teresa Santos

    Garbage for a headline news, didn’t read…

  • Yxon

    woow…magpaloko na naman tayo…….3 taon na naman na perwisyo yan..

  • speedstream2

    Throwing away thousands to haul in millions? Does that sound like a fair trade-off?

  • DarkSideOfTheMoon2

    walang pagbabago. sinasamantala na naman ng mga politiko ang kahirapan ng mga kababayan natin..makuha lang ang boto nila….sana naman ay gamitin natin mga botante ang tamang pagiisip kung sino ang dapat umupo…asahan mong pag nanalo ang mga kandidatong gumastos ng husto sa kampanya ay babawiin nila ito ng sobra sobra…kaya ang corruption hindi na mapuputol…!

    • BatangSingapore

      napansin ko mas napaniwala ka ng balita at madali ka nauto.

      sa makatuwid ay mas malala pa ito kesa sa hindi pag gamit ng isip sa darating ng eleksyon.

  • padrefaura

    whether it is cellphone, candies, baller band, hat, t-shirt, etc., anything that is given is considered vote buying. it is not only UNA, but also team Pnoy that is guilty of that.

  • padrefaura

    ano na pala nangyari sa pamimigay ng ipad ni Jamby of Team Pnoy? bakit parang hindi naging headline yun? so much for fair reporting by Inquirer.

    • nicosan fopalan

      naging headline kaya. kaso wala naman actual na bigayan. kaya walang kaso. tsk tsk

      • padrefaura

        Sige nga, pakita mo kung anong araw naging headline yun.

  • hu_yu

    pag iphone 5 ang bigay nya naku eh jo join ako sa kampanya nya at magkukunwaring boboto sa kanya hehehehehe

  • Descarte5E

    Rotten and in deep sht!

  • speaksoftlylove

    Mas di hamak na malaking halaga yong pinamudmod ng grupo ng “Kaya Natin Ito” pambili ng boto alangalang sa mga kulelat na kandidato ng administrasyon.

    Kandabulol pa sina Hontiveros at Drilon ka didedeny pero umamin na ang National Bookstore na bumili si Harvey Keh ng gift certificates sa halagang 13 million. Ganun din si Bum Aquinio ng tinanong wala daw ebidensya. Pero nang sabihin sa kanya na umamin na ang National Bookstore sabay kambyo na “Dapat yong Kaya Natin ito anf sasagot dyan” ang daling ano? Di pa kasama ang Mercury Drug gift certificates nyan na di hamak na mas mahal. Ang dami talagang pera ng Team Malisya. Siguro dahil sa kita ng rice smuggling, agriiculture products smuggling at oil smuggling, Hayun, ibinulgar na si Undersecretary Oban ng DOTC sa media na siyang tumutulong sa mga oil smugglers pero abswelto kaagad ng inutile na president di pa man nagimbestigahan..

    • speaksoftlylove

      Naghanap pa si Hontiveros ng ebidensya at sabi kay Tiangco, “Kung walang maipakitang ebidensya ay magresign na si Tangco.” Kaya tuloy lumabas na yong mga barangay officials ng District 2 sa QC at nakahanda na raw yong 5,000 winesses na tumanggap ng gift cards magmula sa Kaya Natin ito sa pamamagitan ng opisina ni Rep. Banal. O hayan, Hontiveros, napasubo ka sa kalokohan mo.

  • Fulpol

    hindi umubra ang pamimigay ng house n lot ni villar sa show ni willi revillame dati..

  • Fulpol

    condom mula kay risa hontiveros, anyone?

  • ranjoranido

    ok langyan then after manalo ng cp wag na silang iboto. ganun lang ka simple.

  • xpider07

    Nasa rally ako, hindi ako nabigyan ng cell phone. Inis ako, hindi ko ngayon sila iboboto!

  • nakawan

    I can’t stand politicians, but I really hate Filipino politicians.

  • Pulokoy

    I hope the one who catches the phones would vote the other party … so it would be a lose lose situation for this candidates ….

  • Yobhtron

    Huwag iboto ang mga candidato na namimigay ng gadgets siguradong mangungurakot lang mga yan kapag nanalo. BASTA UNA DAPAT IBASURA!

  • kismaytami

    Nothing new here. Candidates buy voters one way or another.

  • mekeni62

    may namigay ng iPad,may namigay ng P1T-P2T vouchers ng National Bookstore at Mercury drug,ngayon cellphone naman. Ano ba ang ginagawa ng Comelec?

  • HarryK

    Those that buy votes will steal the nation blind.

  • DeltaJulietMama

    mga KANDIDATONG kagaya nya.. at ang mga TAONG BOBOTO sa kanya at sa mga KAURI nila?!! tsk, nakakahiyang KABOBOHAN!!

  • JosengSisiw1

    That’s the worst thing you can do to a crowd; throwing things as if they are hungry dogs waiting and jumping for meat. No dignity at all!

  • BatangSingapore

    kapag ang pera ng bayan hindi ibinahagi sa mamayan ang tawag ay corruption. isa itong illegal

    kapag ang bagay ibinigay ng direkta sa mamayan ng politiko sa panahon ng kampanyahan ang tawag ay vote buying, illegal pa rin.

    maliwanag na ang malaking problema ng filipino ay kabobohan. at ang kabobohan ay nagdudulot ng ingit sa mga naapektuhan. kapag may ingit may insecurity sa katawan ay siguradong may kayabangan.

    sa kabuuan ang bulok na edukasyon sa pilipinas ang sanhi at ugat ng kahinaan ng mga filipino. ang kahinaan ng filipino ay kahinaan ng bansa.

    at ang kahinaan ng bansa ay siyang sinasamantala ng iilan mayaman pamilya. na hinahayaan naman ng mga duwag na filipino.

    • dani77777

      Ano ang pinasasabi mo? BUGOK!!!

  • LOLA


    • penoy2012

      Hindi nga tinikman, nanghiram pa ng lipstik.

  • LOLA


  • Eddie AAA Calderon

    Again the government of any country is as good as the majority of the voters who put their officials in elected offices. If the country is a good country and its people have integrity then the government will reflect on the character of its people or the majority of its people.

  • $25995786

    During martiallaw I was one who believed on Binay as a lawyer. As far sa i know he belongs to lower middle class or middle class in terms of assets and earnings during that time. After working as mayor and other govt. positions he bocomeone ofthe richest politicians after Cory’s time. Itwas a miracle for Binay. Remember voters politician whouses their pork barrels or govt. money for projects at the end become richer. It is like one peso for you voters two pesos for me(politician).

  • penoy2012

    Nokia 3310 ang pinamigay. Excess stocks last 2001 elections.

  • potchi25

    Ayus ah. Konsehal pa lang tinatakbo mo, ganyan ka na ah.

  • LOLA



  • LOLA


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