MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is busy with its preparations for the upcoming 2019 midterm elections.
Aside from this, Comelec reminded the public to vote wisely and warned candidates against vote buying.
Comelec Spokesman James Jimenez said they have coordinated with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other groups to keep an eye on said election offense.
Comelec admitted that the battle against vote buying is a tough challenge, however, their work becomes easier with reports that help identify those who are engaged in vote buying.
“Vote buying remains a problem but over the last two elections. We’ve been making advances dahil nakikipag-ugnayan tayo sa PNP and sa mga local groups ngayon ang pinanggagalingan ng reports na nakukuha natin,” said Jimenez.
Comelec explained that cash is not the sole means to buy a person’s vote.
In the previous elections, offers ranged from livestock, vegetables, sacks of rice, and grocery items.
Jimenez said a few cash is not worth handing the country’s management over to corrupt officials.
“Kahit sabihin mo ng limang libong worth of something, limang libo lang iyan hindi tatagal iyan pero iyong serbisyo na mawawala sa inyo dahil binigay niyo sa taong walang pakialam sa kapakanan ninyo. Tatlong taon niyong iindahin iyon at kung minalas-malas kayo baka ang umalit sa kaniya kamag-anak pa rin,” said Jimenez.
Apart from cash and products, election candidates take advantage of government services to score a vote.
“We’ve also had cases of vote buying where being promised were insurance cards, and in some cases membership in government. Dole out programs, those are particularly disturbing,” said the spokesperson.
The Omnibus Election Code states that any candidate who is proven to have engaged in vote buying, may face disqualification, imprisonment and lose the right to vote. — UNTV News & Rescue
Bato eligible for police escorts after receiving death threats — PNP
Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa
MANILA, Philippines — Philippine National Police chief, PDG Oscar Albayalde said the PNP is ready to assign police escorts to its former chief, PDG Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa despite his intention to run for Senate as he has allegedly been receiving death threats from drug lords.
Comelec has a ruling that candidates and private individuals are not allowed to have police escorts during election period.
Albayalde added that Dela Rosa is allowed to have two security details owing to his former position as chief of PNP.
He explained that based on PNP regulations, all retired generals who hold a two-star rank and higher are allowed to have two police escorts.
Should Dela Rosa wish to have more than two security details, he has to secure the President’s approval. — Lea Ylagan
Koko Pimentel, Freddie Aguilar, Abner Afuang among first to file COCs
(L-R) Former Pagsanjan Mayor Abner Afuang, former Senate President Koko Pimentel, Music icon Freddie Aguilar
MANILA, Philippines — The early birds at the office of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) in Intramuros Manila were filing their certificates of candidacy for the Senate race in 2019.
The first to arrive was former Senate president Koko Pimentel who is seeking reelection. He said decided to file early as he will be busy preparing for his wedding next week with partner, Kathyrna Yu.
“Ito po ang aming campaign color ng partido PDP Laban,” Pimentel said referring to his red shirt. “Pakiusap ko sa mga kapartido ko na pag nag-file o nagkampanya, dalhin ang color red. That is the revolutionary color. Ibig sabhihin nun, PDP entertains even radical ideas on how to solve our problems — out of the box solutions to problems,” he said.
Following Pimentel was musician Freddie Aguilar who said he was compelled to join the Senate race.
“Matagal na nila akong kinukubinsi dahil daw po sa aking mga advocacy sa mga kanta ko for 40 years,” Aguilar said. “Ang nagpapayag sa akin ay mga ordinaryong mamamayan lang po at sa kagustuhan ko pong tuloy-tuloy ang pagbabago, pati ako na walang hilig sa pulitika ay tumakbo na rin para makatulong sa bayan natin.”
Third to arrive was former Pangasinan mayor Abner Afuang who first grabbed headlines in 2009 when he poured water on celebrity doctor Hayden Kho during a Senate probe on a sex video scandal.
“Sabi ko ayaw ko na ng pulitika; kultura pera. Ginawang political dynasty ng nga corrupt na official,” he ranted before members of the press.
Afuang’s COC was reported to have been rejected by Comelec because he used an outdated form. He said he will correct the error and file again. — Nel Maribojoc
Comelec resets COC filing to Oct. 11 to 17
MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has reset the schedule of filing the certificate of candidacy (COC) for the 2019 national and local elections.
Instead of doing it on October 1 to 5, the poll body moved the schedule to October 11 to 17, excluding weekends.
Comelec Spokesman James Jimenez, however, stressed that there will be no extension of filing hours on the last day of filing. – UNTV News and Rescue