Comelec warns bets: No campaign until Oct. 18
MANILA, Philippines–The Commission on Elections on Wednesday warned barangay (village) election candidates against engaging in premature campaign activities.
In a press briefing, Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes said candidates who campaign immediately after the filing of their certificate of candidacy but before the Oct. 18 start of the campaign period will be charged with an election offense.
The period for filing COCs is on Friday until Oct. 17, excluding Sunday, Oct. 13.
“Wait for the official campaign period to begin before holding your campaign activities or risk disqualification and election offense cases,” Brillantes advised candidates.
Violation of election laws could result in disqualification from running for the public post and election offense cases, which carry one to six years imprisonment as penalty.
Meanwhile, the Comelec urged aspirants for the barangay elections to file their COCs as early as possible.
According to Commissioner Christian Lim, only six days have been allotted for the filing of COCs and filing early will ensure that one’s name will be on the list of candidates, considering the expected huge volume of COC filers, he added.
“If everybody files on the last day, some COCs may not be accepted. The Comelec may not be able to handle the volume, Lim said.
Filing early may also “avoid rivals from seeing each other in Comelec offices that may result in heated face-offs … anything can happen. So file (COCs) early,” he added.
Meanwhile, the printing of the more than 54 million ballots that will be used for the Oct. 28 barangay polls is already complete.
“We’ve already completed the printing. We are just verifying about 10 percent of the total number of ballots to see if the serial numbers are okay,” said Commissioner Luie Guia.
Guia said 90 percent of the 54,051,626 ballots have already been turned over to the packing and shipping committee.
“Everything is on track in so far as the logistics of the elections are concerned,” added Guia.