MANILA — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday reminded local candidates to take down their illegal campaign posters and streamers until Thursday, March 28, a day before the start of the campaign period.
In a notice to all candidates and parties for the May 13, National and Local Elections, Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said aspirants in the local positions must remove prohibited forms of election propaganda or face election offense charges.
“The Commission on Elections reminds candidates to immediately remove all prohibited election propaganda at least 72 hours before the start of the Campaign Period,” he said.
The poll body official noted that failure to follow the directive will result to the filing of charges against erring candidates.
“After three days (since the start of the campaign period), they need to remove it. If otherwise, we will remove, document them and then they will be given a notice,” he added.
The campaign period for candidates in the local positions officially starts on Friday.
Local candidates include those running for Member of the House of Representatives; Provincial Governor; Provincial Vice-Governor; Member, Sangguniang Panlalawigan; Mayor; Vice-Mayor; Member, Sangguniang Panlungsod; and Member, Sangguniang Bayan.
Prohibited forms of election propaganda include those that are posted outside the common poster areas, in public places, or in private properties without the consent of the owner.
Common poster areas are located in public places such as plazas, markets, barangay centers and other areas with heavy pedestrian or vehicular traffic in the city/municipality as approved by the Election Officers (EOs).
Also, posters and tarpaulins may be posted in private properties, provided that the posting has the consent of the owner.
Jimenez reported that the nationwide taking down of illegal posters of candidates running for national positions is ongoing.
Violation of campaign rules is considered as an election offense which carries the penalty of one to six years imprisonment, removal of right to vote, and disqualification to hold public office. (PNA)
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