Poll candidates urged to submit campaign activities

Candidates are directed to submit their campaign activities to be approved by an inter-agency committee as part of the new protocols in the 2022 polls due to the pandemic.

Commission on Elections Ilocos Assistant Regional Director, Lawyer Reddy Balarbar, made this same call to all the candidates in the Ilocos Region in a virtual press conference on Friday afternoon.

Balarbar said the campaign committee will be composed of the Department of Health (DOH), Philippine National Police (PNP), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

“There will be national, regional, provincial, city or municipal campaign committees that will monitor the campaign activities of the candidates, and they will approve or disapprove the request of the candidates’ campaign activities,” he said.

Campaign activities include caucuses, house-to-house, and motorcades, among others.

Balarbar said this is part of the new protocols to be implemented for the 2022 national and local elections amid the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

“This is also the first time the Comelec will be hiring medical personnel for the voting centers because of the pandemic,” he said.

He added barriers will also be in place as well as isolation areas.

“The barriers are to protect the electoral board from possible infection and the isolation areas are for voters who will exhibit symptoms of the virus,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Ilocos Police Regional Office (PRO-1) will deploy some 5,314 of its personnel to ensure peace and order in the coming elections.

In the same forum, PRO-1 Director Brig. Gen. Emmanuel Peralta said 2,392 of their personnel will be deployed in Pangasinan, 832 in La Union, 1,300 in Ilocos Sur, and 790 in Ilocos Norte.

“The number is just the PNP personnel and does not yet include the augmentation from the AFP and Philippine Coast Guard, so we are still finalizing the deployment,” he said.

Only the towns of Balaoan and Agoo in La Union were placed under hot spot areas due to election-related violence that occurred in 2018, Peralta said.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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