Supporters of some senatorial candidates began removing their large billboards and streamers in Bacolod City and other parts of Negros Occidental yesterday, with the 90-day national campaign period for senate and party-list seats set to start today, acting provincial Comelec supervisor, Salud Milagros Villanueva, said.
The supporters of at least three senatorial candidates voluntarily removed their oversized materials, Villanueva said, as she urged others to do the same.
Villanueva stressed that campaign materials should be posted in designated poster areas.
Only campaign materials of national candidates must be removed starting today, the local campaign will start on March 29 yet, Villanueva said.
Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said candidates should comply with election laws and Comelec rules.
“They should remove all their illegal posters and tarpaulins and report their campaign contributions and expenses truthfully,” she said.
The Comelec rules state that considered lawful campaign materials are pamphlets, leaflets, stickers or other printed materials not exceeding 8 1/2 by 14 feet; handwritten or printed letters; posters made of cloth, paper, cardboard not exceeding 2 x 3 feet; streamers not bigger than 3 x 8 feet at the site of public rally or meeting shall be removed within 24 hours after the activity; mobile units and vehicles used in motorcades of all types.
The Comelec also prohibits the posting, displaying or exhibiting of any election campaign material outside of the authorized common poster areas, in public places, or in private properties without the consent of the owner.
Villanueva said about 1,000 DESO (Department of Education Supervisory Officials) tech support staff will start training at the end of February. DESOs are the supervisors in voting centers or schools. VCM technicians before, are now called DESO tech support staff, most of whom are teachers, she said.
Electoral boards, previously known as Board of Election Inspectors, will have their training for almost the whole month of March, which is longer than that in other provinces, she said. This is because Negros Occidental has 1.8 million voters and is one of the pilot areas for the Voter Registration Verification System, Villanueva said.
Training of the members of the election board of canvassers and consolidated canvassing system operators will be in April, she added.*
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