Pres. Duterte tells Comelec to think of space, modality for candidates to campaign amid new normal

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte talks to the people after holding a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) core members at the Malacañang Palace on November 9, 2021. KARL ALONZO/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO


(Eagle News) – President Rodrigo Duterte directed the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) to provide for a space or modality that would give candidates for national and local elections a chance to campaign and reach to the people amid the new normal.

Duterte, in his latest “Talk To the People” on Tuesday, Nov. 9, said that the Comelec should come out with a venue whatever modality that could be for candidates to be able to campaign given the limitations amid the pandemic.

He said that as to how this would be done would be up for the Comelec to decide.

Ganoon talaga. Iyan ang ano ngayon, ‘yan ang problema ng COMELEC pati ang ano — kung papayagan nila tayong mag-assemble because you cannot campaign by just shouting at one corner. You have to have a place where maybe they would limit the attendants or the number of people there,” he said.

The 76-year old Philippine leader said that some candidates would not be able to afford buying ad time in radio and national television, or even space for newspaper ads.

Problema na ng COMELEC ‘yan. But you must give — I’d like to remind the COMELEC that you must give the candidates really the space and the — whatever modalities there. Because there can never be an election without a campaign and other people cannot also afford — some candidates cannot afford the expense of the TV exposures.

The campaign period for national positions is from Feb. 8, 2022, to May 7, 2022, or 90 days before the scheduled elections, according to the calendar of activities for the May 9, 2022 National and Local Elections (NLE) released by the poll body.

These national posts are for President, Vice-President, Senator, and party-list groups.

The campaign period for local candidates, on the other hand, will start on March 25, 2022 which is 45 days before the 2022 national elections. The local campaign period will end on May 7, 2022.

These are candidates for the positions of members of the House of Representatives, and elective regional, provincial, city, and municipal officials.

The election period will be from January 9, 2022 to June 6, 2022.

In May this year, Comelec announced it would be modifying its rules on campaigning amid the pandemic.

This is in view of the COVID-19 situation where there could be limitations in face-to-face campaigns.

Before the pandemic, the traditional forms of campaigning include face-to-face campaigns, and gatherings where national and local candidates present their plans to voters.

Comelec earlier said that aside from TV, radio and newspaper ads, candidates can also use social media platforms to reach out to voters.

(Eagle News Service)