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Comelec urged to probe reports Go gave cash to fire victims

/ 04:55 AM March 19, 2019

Two poll watchdogs have urged the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to look into reports that senatorial candidate Christopher “Bong” Go distributed cash assistance to fire victims during the campaign period.

“[Go’s] cash donations may be examined by the Comelec if this action [falls] under the ambit of campaigning,” said Eric Alvia, secretary of National Citizens’ Movement for Free Elections.

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“There is reason to investigate him not just for vote-buying but also [for] the use of government funds and resources,” said Danilo Arao, convener of Kontra Daya.

The poll watchdogs’ appeal came after Go was reported to have visited fire-stricken Barangay South Cembo in Makati City on March 5 to give a speech while his staff distributed P2,000 each to the affected families.

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Go also reportedly visited fire victims in Santa Ana, Manila, on Feb. 18 and promised cash assistance to them.

Arao said it was not the first time that Go was accused of using government funds and resources in his election campaign.

Under the law, vote-buying is defined as the giving, offering, or promising money or anything of value, directly or indirectly, to any person, association, corporation, entity or community in order to induce anyone … to vote for or against any candidate.

Sought for comment, Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said the allegations against Go may prompt any party to file charges against him. —TINA G. SANTOS

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TAGS: 2019 elections, Bong Go, cash assistance, Christopher Go, Comelec, Kontra Daya, Namfrel
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