Abalos warns campaign violators as BSKE fever heats up
No electioneering

Abalos warns campaign violators as BSKE fever heats up

Abalos warns campaign violators as BSKE fever heats up

Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. (File photo from the Senate Public Relations and Information Bureau)

MANILA, Philippines — Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos warned candidates of the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections (BSKE) who are committing illegal campaign activities will not be proclaimed to their local posts even if they win the polls.

In a statement on Saturday, Abalos said the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) received reports of candidates who were “deliberately committing the prohibited acts defined in our election laws, especially illegal campaigning and vote buying.”


“The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has already given its warning that even if candidates got the numbers to win the elections, they might still not be proclaimed until the complaints against them were not resolved,” Abalos said.


Most of the reports coursed through the DILG were the candidate’s use of oversized campaign posters and placing them outside the designated common poster areas.

Candidates had also become more tech savvy in buying votes as they are now “using online fund transfers and even providing various forms of assistance” to their constituents.

Abalos directed the Philippine National Police and the DILG’s other attached offices to help the Comelec in going after campaign violators nationwide.

Following the period for the filing of certificates of candidacy from Aug. 28 to Sept. 4, Comelec has so far filed disqualification petitions against 137 candidates for premature campaigning.

Also on Saturday, the Dangerous Drugs Board and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency announced the moratorium on the implementation of certain activities under the Barangay Drug Clearing Program (BDCP) in connection with the BSKE.

The BDCP activities suspended until the end of the election period on Nov. 29 were the identification and consolidation of a list of persons who use drugs, pushers, drug den maintainers, coddlers, protectors, financiers, cultivators, manufacturers, and others.


Gov’t employees warned

The Civil Service Commission (CSC) also warned the 1.9 million government employees across the nation to abstain from engaging in electioneering and partisan activities until Oct. 28.

Electioneering and partisan political activities, as defined by the CSC, encompass actions intended to support or oppose a specific candidate or political party running for public office.

“The Commission recognizes the civil servants’ eagerness to enhance public service through electoral engagement. Nevertheless, it is imperative that we refrain from electioneering and partisan activities during this period,” said CSC Chair Karlo Nograles.

The prohibition applies to all members of the civil service, including permanent, temporary, contractual or casual employees, working across all branches, subdivisions, instrumentalities, and agencies of the Philippine government.

However, the CSC clarified that civil servants are still allowed to exercise their rights as citizens. They can cast their votes, express their views on current political issues, and mention the names of candidates or parties they support.

The CSC warned for a first offense, a suspension ranging from one month and one day to six months will be imposed. For a second offense, it’s dismissal from the service.

Health, social services

Anakalusugan Rep. Ray Reyes said the barangay’s delivery of health and social services like vaccination programs should not be dampened even if incumbent barangay officials are busy with their campaigns.

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“We want to remind our incumbent barangay officials that even if the campaign period began last Oct. 19, their official duties with the barangay have not ended,” Reyes said.

TAGS: 2023 barangay elections, Benhur Abalos, Department of the Interior and Local Government

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