Election period starts January 10
Manila (7 January) -- The 142-day election period in connection with the May 10, 2010 national and local elections along with prescribed activities and prohibited acts will start January 10, according to the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
The election period is based on Comelec Resolution No. 8646, which prescribes the Calendar of Activities and Periods of Prohibited Acts for the first-ever automated political exercise in the country.
While prohibitions on certain acts will start January 10, it is only on February 9 when election activities will actually start with the campaign period for President, Vice-President, Senators, and party-list groups.
The campaign period for candidates for Members of the House of Representatives and elective provincial, city and municipal officials will start March 26.
The casting of votes by overseas absentee voters will start April 10 and any day thereon until election day on May 10.
Municipal, city, district and provincial boards of canvassers and special boards of canvassers will also convene starting on election day.
The last day of the election period on June 9 will also be the last day for candidates to file Sworn Statements of Election Contributions and Expenditures.
Regarding the prohibitions, it shall be unlawful starting Jan. 10 for persons to carry or transport firearms or other deadly weapons (gun ban) in public places, private vehicles or public conveyances even if licensed to possess or carry the same unless authorized in writing by Comelec.
Effective this date, the following acts will also be prohibited: alteration of territory of a precinct or establishment of a new precinct; suspension of elective local officials; transfer of officers and employees in the civil service; organization or maintenance of reaction, strike or similar forces; and, use of security personnel or bodyguards by candidates, whether or not such body guards are regular members of the AFP or other law enforcement agency.
Starting February 9, the following would be deemed violations of election laws: giving donations or gift in cash or in kind; use of armored landcraft, watercraft or aircraft; and, appointment or use of special policemen, confidential agents or the like. Effective March 11, it would be against the law to illegally release prisoners.
By March 26, the following would be unlawful: appointment or hiring of new employees, creation or filling up of new positions, and promotion or giving of salary increases, remuneration or privilege; construction of public works, delivery of materials for public works and issuance of treasury warrants or similar devices for a future undertaking chargeable against public funds; and, release, disbursement or expenditure of public funds.
On the eve and day of the election, the following would not be allowed: campaigning; selling, furnishing, offering, buying, serving or taking intoxicating liquor; and, giving, accepting free transportation, food, drinks and things of value.
The following would also be prohibited on election day: soliciting votes or undertaking any propaganda for or against any candidate or any political party within the polling place or within thirty (30) meters thereof; voting more than once or in substitution of another; holding of fairs, cockfights, boxing, horse races or any other similar sports; and, opening of booths or stalls for the sale of merchandise or refreshments within a radius of thirty (30) meters from the pilling place. (Comelec/PIA 6) [top]