Comelec sets rules for 'last minute' COC filers

By Ferdinand Patinio

October 7, 2021, 12:57 pm

<p><em>(PNA photo by Joey Razon)</em></p>

(PNA photo by Joey Razon)

MANILA – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Thursday said it will accommodate filers of certificate of candidacy (COC) beyond the 5 p.m. deadline on the last day of the filing period set on Friday.

Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said they will implement the procedure as stated in Section 24 of the poll body's Resolution No. 10717.

“If at 4:45 p.m. of the last day of filing of the COC, there are still aspirants inside the designated queuing area intending to file their respective COCs, the Receiving Officer shall: List the names of the aspirants inside the designated queuing area; List the names of the aspirants consecutively, indicating the time of listing. Only those with complete COCs shall be listed,” Jimenez said in a statement.

Jimenez said the names of the aspirants will be announced in the order in which they are listed.

"Once the name is called, the aspirant shall proceed with the filing of COC. Failure to appear when the name is called may result in non-acceptance of the COC,” he added.

The Comelec said COCs deemed as incomplete are those that have no documentary stamp attached; no signature of the aspirant; not notarized; incomplete address; no photograph and not filled out.

“The same procedure shall be observed if, at 5:00 p.m. on the last day of filing of the COC, there are still aspirants inside and within 30 meters from the designated queuing area. A COC filed in accordance with this procedure shall be stamped "received" at the time it is actually filed and shall be deemed filed on time,” Jimenez added.

Pursuant to Sections 28 and 29 of Resolution No. 10717, Jimenez said candidates have until November 8 to correct the spelling of their names that will appear on the official ballot.

The tentative list of candidates will be posted from October 29 at the poll body's website and at the offices where the COCs are filed for purposes of checking the name to appear on the official ballot.

“Aspirants are encouraged to check their names to appear on the official ballots,” Jimenez said.

Meanwhile, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar ordered all police commanders to map out their poll election plans to prevent violence arising from intense political rivalry.

“Now that it is clear who will be vying for positions in the May 2022 polls, especially for local elective positions, we are expecting heated political rivalries that could lead to violence, so I have instructed our unit commanders to begin preparations to ensure that no one chaos will occur in their respective areas of responsibility,” Eleazar said in a statement.

Data from the PNP revealed that almost all the election-related violence in the past stemmed from intense political rivalries of candidates vying for local posts, which include clashes among the supporters. 

Eleazar said that the PNP is currently reviewing and assessing the areas with a history of election-related violence.

Part of the campaign to ensure honest, peaceful, and orderly elections in May elections next year is the aggressive campaign against loose firearms and the accounting of private armed groups in various parts of the country. 

“I also ordered our Intelligence Group to start the monitoring and background check on all the candidates who have the history, the potential, and the means to sow violence as part of our aggressive efforts to ensure the honest and peaceful elections next year,” said Eleazar. 

Eleazar also tasked all regional and provincial commanders' to place a sufficient number of their police personnel who can be tapped for peace and order operations on the last day of the COC filing period on Friday. (with Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)