Rafanan wants repeal of law on setting up of common poster areas

October 15, 2010 10:55 am 

MANILA, Oct. 14 – An official of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said that the law on the establishment of common poster areas should be scrapped since candidates and even poll body personnel continue to violate the rule.

“The common poster area, I think is should be abolished. It makes a mockery of election laws. It makes the Comelec a laughing stock. We only say that it is a violation but we haven’t done anything about it. We better scrap the law,” said Law Department director Ferdinand Rafanan.

Section 9 of the Fair Election Act provides that lawful propaganda materials should only be placed in designated common poster areas such as plazas, markets and barangay centers.

Section 7 of Comelec Resolution 9043, states that not more than 10 common poster areas should be designated in each barangay.

Posting of campaign materials are prohibited in streets, bridges, public structures or buildings, trees, electric posts or wires, schools, shrines, and main thoroughfares.

Rafanan said that just like the candidates, election officers (Eos) should also be held accountable for placing posters in non-common poster areas and charged with election offenses.

The resolution stated that members of the Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies may be called upon by the Election Officers (EOs) in apprehending the violators caught in the act and file the appropriate charges against them.

Election laws said that posting campaign materials in non-common poster areas is an election offense, which carries a penalty of one to six years of imprisonment as well as removal of right to vote and be elected to public office.

The campaign period for the village and youth polls runs from Oct. 14 and ends on Oct. 23, or two days before Election Day. (PNA) RMA/FGP/utb

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