Bets urged to refrain from paying ‘permit to campaign’ fees
(The Philippine Star) - January 7, 2016 - 9:00am

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has warned politicians to refrain from paying the so-called “permit to campaign” fees the communist New People’s Army (NPA) rebels have been demanding from candidates during the campaign period. 

Davao City election officer Danilo Cullo warned candidates not to yield to extortion from the NPA in exchange for campaigning in rebel-infested areas and assurance of winning in the elections.

Cullo warned that candidates paying the permit to campaign could face disqualification.

The NPA rebels usually demand fees, depending on the position a candidate is seeking and the area where the rebels operate.

Cullo reiterated the warning issued by the Comelec national office in Manila not to give in to the demands of the rebels.

“The Commission on Elections in Manila has already issued the warning for all political candidates not to support this scheme of the insurgents,” he said.

Cullo, however, admitted the arrangement between the candidate and the NPA will be hard to prove in the absence of a written contract and witnesses.

Just like vote buying, he said someone must have to witness in court and attest that such situation really happened.

Cullo underscored the five main prohibitions as provided by the Omnibus Election Code from Jan. 10 to Election Day on May 9, ranging from the alteration and establishment of new precincts, transfer or movement of civil service personnel, use of bodyguards by candidates unless authorized by the poll body, the gun ban and suspension of elected local officials.

He explained the transfer or movement of civil service personnel might impact on the results of the elections.

Cullo said the movement of poll body personnel during the election period could be one of the exemptions aimed at avoiding familiarity with the candidates.

“A reshuffle of poll body personnel might start on the second week of January 2016, starting from the regional election director to the election officers in cities, provinces and municipalities,” he said.

 

ACIRC CANDIDATES COMELEC CULLO DANILO CULLO DAVAO CITY ELECTION ELECTION DAY JAN NEW PEOPLE OMNIBUS ELECTION CODE
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