Roxas camp proposes signing of written rules before final debate
The camp of Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas is proposing that the candidates should sign a written set of rules before holding the third and last Commission on Elections-organized debate in April.
This is to avoid another disagreement or last-minute changes in the rules previously set by the Comelec, “Daang Matuwid” coalition spokesperson and Akbayan Rep. Barry Gutierrez said on Monday, a day after the debate which was delayed for almost two hours due to a miscommunication between TV5 and Vice President Jejomar Binay’s camp.
“Kaya ang isang ipropropose namin sa huling debate, mag meeting tayo, within how many meetings it takes—two or three meetings. Pero sa dulo let’s have a signed written set of rules para pag dating doon sa debate walang gulatan, wala ng bawian, walang teka hindi ito yung pinagusapan natin,” Gutierrez, who was present during the meeting moments before the debate, said in a media briefing.
“At the end of the day it was disservice to everyone, not just the candidates, but to all of the Filipino people who wanted to watch the debate, who waited for more than 1 hour for the debate to actually start,” he added.
Gutierrez also denied rumors that it was Roxas who caused the delay, stressing that the members of Binay’s team were the ones demanding for a change in the rule.
Among all the candidates present at University of the Philippines Visayas in Cebu City, it was Roxas who strongly protested Binay’s insistence on bringing documents.
Gutierrez recalled that Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista reiterated in their meetings that the same set rules as in the first “PiliPinas” debate in Cagayan de Oro City would apply to the second round of the presidential debate.
Included in the rules imposed by the poll body is that the candidates are not allowed to bring notes, cellphone, any electronic device and aids. They are only allowed to hold blank pieces of paper provided by the Comelec where they can jot down notes.
The last round of the presidential debates will be held on April 24 at the University of Pangasinan. It will be hosted by ABS-CBN and Manila Bulletin. JE
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