TABUK CITY, Kalinga- As filing for the certificate of candidacy (COC) is over, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) warns political aspirants against early campaigning.
Atty. Reyman Solbita, COMELEC-Tabuk head, said that political aspirants should only start to campaign during the campaign period. “Once you filed your COC, you are already governed by the election laws on campaigning,” he said.
Solbita added that the aspirant is already considered as a candidate and that they will automatically fall under the rules set by COMELEC.
He also said that the start of the local campaign period is on March 25, 2022.“Isu nga bawal nga agkumpanya candidates publicly,” he clarified.
He explained further that “publicly” means posting tarpaulins, streamers, talking in the open and giving speeches, speaking on radios, and posting on social media to vote for them falls under the rules.
“Urayen u [political aspirants] iti March 25, mabalin kayun tu agibitin-bitin tarpaulin u, agsa-u iti stage wenno inya man nga um-umung tapnu ikampanya u ti bagi u,” he said.
If a political aspirant gets caught violating the early campaigning rule, Solbita said that it will be considered an election offence and will be a ground for disqualification for the election and also a criminal offence.
Solbita added that other violations include vote buying and illegal campaigning, if caught, political aspirants will not only get disqualified but will also face jail time if proven guilty. By Edward Joseph Gacuya