The Commission on Elections is accepting certificates of candidacy until Wednesday, October 17.
Candidates can't use government resources to campaign, Duterte says
Alexis Romero ( - October 15, 2018 - 8:14pm

MANILA, Philippines — No candidate will be allowed to use state resources during the campaign period, President Rodrigo Duterte said, as he ordered security forces to remain non-partisan and to work for honest elections. 

"Nobody but nobody can use government resources. Not even (former presidential aide Christopher) Bong (Go). I will not allow it," Duterte said during the Army's change of command ceremony in Fort Bonifacio. 

"Let us make a deal here, promise. You make a commitment to the Filipino people. This election, we will all be strictly neutral. The Armed Forces, the police, and the uniformed personnel of government, I am asking you not to indulge in partisan politics. We won't support anyone," he added.  

Go, who served as Duterte's top aide for more than two decades, filed his certificate of candidacy for senator earlier Monday. Duterte noted that Go is no longer his aide but the former presidential assistant was with the president during the Army event. 

Go, who has been very visible in government events and whose photos are emblazoned in tarpaulins and posters, has been accused of using state resources to promote himself. The former presidential aide has denied the allegation and claimed that his supporters are behind those materials.

Go earlier urged his supporters to take down the posters and tarpaulins containing his photo and his face. 

While he is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, Duterte said he would endorse candidates because the presidency is a political position. 

"But I expect everybody to respect the constitutional prohibition. It’s good, it’s good for the country, and I announced to the country now that we make a pledge: there will be an election and it will be an honest one," the president said, referring to the constitutional provision that bars uniformed personnel from siding with politicians.  

"I hate to talk about politics in a crowd like this. Ours is a commitment to a democractic ideals. One is that the military and the uniformed police personnel should not, should not indulge in politics," he added. 

Duterte said he never entered military camps during election season when he was still mayor of Davao City. Duterte was mayor of the southern city for 23 years. 

"There will never be a time that I will talk to you...I may have a very lousy mouth but you know my values are quite good. Especially when it calls for the exercise of delicadeza," the president said. 

"But I value friendship, I value loyalty," he added.

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