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PIA Press Release

Comelec Bohol gears up for May '07 polls

by Rey Anthony Chiu

Tagbilaran City (14 November) -- SPEAKING on the presumption of regularity, Bohol Election Supervisor and lawyer Veronico Petalcorin said the Commission of Elections (Comelec) as mandated has come up with Resolution 7707 or the schedule of activities relative to the May 14, 2007 polls even before no-elections talks surfaced.

Now, as to the timeline, the local office has run the gears to feed the information relative to the May 14, 2007 polls according to the resolution, lawyer Petalcorin leaked.

Guesting the weekly Kapihan sa PIA and further spreading the word on the calendar of activities set for the 2007 elections, Petalcorin, who was a student leader, three term councilor and lawyer reiterated that the constitution has set the elections next year.

With this and whether the government has fully or partially implemented its computerization program, he pressed that barring any irregular event, the elections should push through.

Clarifying points over the alleged failure of the country to implement the computerization, which international observers believe would shape up the country's notoriously flawed electoral systems, the provincial supervisor said the full computerization is still set for 2015.

"What we have been implementing is computerization of out electoral database, which may help straighten the list of voters and eliminate the ghost precincts, flying voters and other registration irregularity," he clarified.

The idea of a fully computerized elections using digitized data may not still be used in this coming elections, though he admits Comelec is still coping with the need to streamline local operations.

According to the Comelec Resolution 7707, the calendar of activities for the May 14 elections has started last July 26 and lasts until July 13, 2007 when the candidates shall have filed their election expense and expenditure reports. This is over and above the election commission's long-running registration of voters.

Election period, he said starts January 14 and ends June 13, he said basing on the resolution signed by chairman Benjamin Abalos and five Comelec commissioners.

Before November 30, this month, parties should have selected and nominated official candidates for all positions pursuant to Section 6, of the Republic Act 7166 in relation to Section 29 of RA 6646, the calendar bares.

Even then, and asked about the abuse of broadcast airtime by political wannabees, he pointed that the law does not prohibit early campaigns before March 30, which is the official campaign period for Congressional bets down to the local candidates.

The only thing inconvenient about floating out early is that they may use up their issues and funds as easily that they may not last while they open up the possibility of spending more, he said. (PIA) [top]

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