The Philippine Star : Comelec to issue rules on safe campaigning

27 June 2021

By Robertzon Ramirez | The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is set to issue guidelines on how to safely conduct campaign activities for the 2022 national and local elections, making the lines of accountability clear to candidates.

In an interview, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said the poll body would run after candidates who will violate health protocols during their campaign amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our new regulations will have to make sure that lines of accountability are clear because if something goes wrong now…that will really stick to the elections as a stigma,” he stressed.

Jimenez said Comelec would make sure that the lines of accountability, including the health protocols set by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, are clear for all during the campaign period.

He said it is “something that we have never done before because remember up to this point, we’ve been regulating election propaganda mostly,” and not the conduct of rallies.

Jimenez said Comelec is trying to protect the welfare and the safety of both the candidates and the public as the country continues to fight the pandemic.

Among those that might become prohibited are the traditional distribution of food during rallies and other campaign activities to avoid physical contact. The number of attendees will also be limited in both indoor and outdoor venues.