Comelec starts ‘Oplan Baklas’ against prohibited political posters, billboards

April 14, 2016 3:19 am 

CEBU CITY, April 13 — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has started implementing “Oplan Baklas” against prohibited political posters and billboards in Cebu City.

Cebu Provincial Election Supervisor Eliseo Labaria said all prohibited posters and billboards which exceeded the allowed size and campaign materials which are not in the common poster areas will be removed.

“We’ve been telling the public about this,” said Labaria.

The Fair Elections Act, or Republic Act 9006, said the size of the common poster areas is 12 ft. x 16 ft. and posters should not exceed 2 ft. x 3 ft. in size.

Section 91 of the Omnibus Election Code of the Philippines also requires the designation of common posters areas in strategic places in each town.

Common poster areas are public places authorized by the Comelec.

These are plazas, markets, barangay centers, or private places with permission from the owner.

The Comelec was assisted by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), in implementing “Oplan Baklas.”

Candidates whose campaign posters were tacked on trees may be charged for violating Section 3 of Republic Act 3571, which prohibits the cutting, destroying or injuring of planted or growing trees, flowering plants and shrubs or plants of scenic value along public roads, in plazas, parks other than national parks, school premises or in any other public ground.

Violators may be charged with an election offense, which is punishable with one to six years in jail, disqualification from holding public office and deprivation of the right to vote. (PNA)

LAP/EB/RSM

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