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COMELEC emphasizes election period prohibitions for BSK elections

IPIL, Zamboanga Sibugay (PIA) -- In preparation for the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (BSK) elections, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC)-Zamboanga Sibugay, Provincial Election Supervisor Atty. John Paul Cubero, has reiterated crucial prohibitions that all candidates must observe.

These measures are aimed at ensuring a fair and lawful electoral process, reducing the risk of disqualification, and maintaining the integrity of the elections.

The election period for the BSK elections is scheduled from August 28 to November 29, and during this critical timeframe, numerous prohibitions or prohibited acts are in place and tyeh following are some that Atty. Cubero has emphasized.

Premature Campaigning Prohibition

One of the primary prohibitions that Atty. Cubero emphasized is the ban on premature campaigning. All of the more than 12,000 candidates across Sibugay Province who have filed for Certificates of Candidacy (COC) are strictly prohibited from engaging in any election campaign activities, whether direct or indirect, outside the designated campaign period. Violation of this prohibition can serve as legal grounds for disqualification. The official campaign period for the BSK elections is set from October 19 to 28.

Advocacy Promotion and Campaign Materials

Candidates are further prohibited from promoting their advocacies through various platforms, posting campaign materials on public streets, or producing election-related materials from September 3 to October 18, 2023.

Distribution of "Ayuda" Prohibition

Another critical prohibition that Atty. Cubero highlighted is the total ban on the distribution of "ayuda" or any form of assistance during the campaign period, the day before the elections, and on election day. Even regular projects without official exceptions issued by COMELEC fall under this prohibition, and any violation may lead to disqualification.

Money Ban

During the five days preceding the election and on election day, there is a prohibition on the possession, transport, and carrying of cash exceeding P500,000 or its equivalent in any foreign currency. Such an action is presumed to be intended for vote-buying. However, individuals with specific roles or duties, such as cashiers or disbursing officers, are exempt from this money ban.

Suspicious Transactions and Digital Transactions

Acts constituting suspicious transactions of vote-buying and vote-selling include unusual financial activity between accounts during the election period, large cash withdrawals, encashment of checks lacking legal or trade obligations, or transactions where the amount involved does not align with the client's financial profile. Vote-buying or selling extends to the giving of money through digital or online banking transactions and mobile wallet applications.

Liquor Ban

On election day and the day following it, a strict prohibition is imposed on the buying, selling, and consumption of alcohol.

The Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections are scheduled for October 30, with polling hours from 7 am to 3 pm. These stringent prohibitions serve to maintain the fairness, transparency, and legality of the electoral process and ensure that the elections reflect the true will of the people. (RVC/EDT/JPA/Zamboanga Sibugay)

About the Author

Jocelyn Alvarez


Region 9

Information Center Manager of Zamboanga Sibugay Province

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