Comelec: Candidates who campaign during Maundy Thursday and Good Friday face immediate jail time

March 27, 2013 11:41 pm 

MANILA, March 27 — Commission on Elections(Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. on Wednesday warned candidates who will campaign during Maundy Thursday and Good Friday that they could possibly get immediate jail time for violating election laws.

“Kaunting respeto… wala munang campaign sa dalawang araw. Kapag nangangampanya, under the law, there is no campaigning during Holy Thursday and Good Friday. It's a direct violation and grounds for criminal election offense [Have a little respect. There should be no campaining for two days],” Brillantes said.

"Kapag may nakitang nangampanya sa mga simbahan pwede na natin ipakulong agad [If we see someone campaigning in churches, we could immediately send them to jail]," he added.

Brillantes however said candidates who will visit churches may shake hands with devotees but they could not wear shirts with candidates' names nor hand out leaflets and flyers as those acts are considered campaigning.

He also said local election supervisors were already ordered to give notices to local candidates to remove campaign materials not located within common poster areas.

By April 1, the poll body will start sending out notices to candidates who violate campaign rules on campaign paraphernalia.

The campaign period for local candidates begins on March 29 but since it falls on Good Friday, campaign will start on Saturday.

“Pakiusap ko ay sumunod lamang sila sa batas at kung saan dapat ilagay ang inyong propaganda. Maraming nagsusumbong sa amin at siguradong makikita namin lahat ng iyan [My plea is for them to follow the law. There will always be someone who will report to us and we'll make sure we attend to the complaints on campaign violations]," the poll chief said.

Earlier, the Comelec has urged the public to continue to report campaign violations during the Holy Week. (PNA)

FPV/JMC/UTB

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