Comelec to start removing illegal campaign materials
SEVERAL campaign sorties scheduled this month will mark the start of the campaign period for national candidates.
The United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), which recently formed a partnership with the Garcia-led One Cebu Party, is tentatively scheduled to hold a “big” gathering of supporters on February 16 at the Waterfront Hotel and Casino in Cebu City.
Monching Auxtero, one of One Cebu gubernatorial bet Winston Garcia’s publicity staff members, told CDN in a text message that he can only confirm the attendance of UNA standard-bearer Vice President Jejomar Binay.
Auxtero said he has yet to check who else from the UNA slate will attend the gathering.
Among the prominent local figures allied with UNA are Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, UNA regional coordinator; and Cebu 3rd District Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia.
Lawyer Ramil Abing, assistant provincial administrator and a member of the Liberal Party (LP), said that they will focus on putting up posters for national bets during the first week of the campaign period, which starts today.
He said Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III, LP Cebu chairman, will attend the LP launching in Capiz and Iloilo today.
Camarines Sur 3rd District Rep. Leni Robredo, LP vice presidential bet, was in Cebu to visit local campaign volunteers last week.
Abing said they are also looking at organizing an event for national LP bets before February ends, but are still negotiating with national headquarters for final schedules.
The start of the campaign period also means the Commission on Elections (Comelec) will start removing campaign posters outside designated areas.
Comelec will hold a province-wide Oplan Baklas, a program of the agency in partnership with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Lionel Marco Castillano, Comelec Cebu provincial supervisor, said that election officers in municipalities and cities in the province will chair each task force.
The PNP will provide security to the team conducting the removal while the DPWH will provide manpower to do the removal.
Under Comelec Resolution No. 10049 or the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the Fair Elections Act for May 2016 polls, common poster areas refer to a structure and a location temporarily set up by candidates or political parties for the exclusive purpose of displaying their campaign posters.
It does not include “trees, plants, shrubs located along public roads, in plazas, parks, school premises, or any other public grounds.”
Candidates may not also put up campaign materials along highways, bridges, center islands, flyovers, sky walks, under pass, and other public places not designated as common poster areas.
Campaign materials put up in private places, however, are exempted because it presupposes consent of the owner.
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