The filing of certificates of candidacy (COCs) at the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) for the May 2022 national and local elections has officially begun today according to a Manila Bulletin news report. That means that within the following days, we will see pre-election buzz pop up on social media as potential candidates file their COCs and appear in front of photographers and their respective supporters. Things will be a bit different this time around due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and already it has been reported that all COC filers must present negative RT-PCR test or antigen test results and there will be limitations on the number of companions allowed per filer.
To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Manila Bulletin. Some parts in boldface…
Potential candidates in the May 2022 polls will start filing their Certificates of Candidacy (COCs) Friday, Oct. 1.
Those running for national positions such as for President, Vice President, Senator and Party-List will file their COCs and their Certificates of Nomination and Acceptance of Nomination at the Garden tent of Sofitel Hotel in Pasay City.
For other elective positions: Members of the House of Representatives for legislative districts in the National Capital Region (NCR) at the Office of the Regional Director, NCR; for Members of the House of Representatives for legislative districts in provinces at the Office of the Provincial Election Supervisor concerned; for Members of the House of Representatives for legislative districts in cities outside the NCR, which comprise one or more legislative districts at the Office of the City Election Officer concerned designated for the purpose by the Regional Election Director.
For Member, Sangguniang Panlalawigan at the Office of the Provincial Election Supervisor; for Mayor, Vice-Mayor in cities with more than one Election Officer at the Office of the City Election Officer concerned designated for the purpose by the Regional Election Director.
With the continued threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the poll body is limiting the number of companions of filers as part of their health and safety measures.
“Candidates from President to Senator we allow a maximum of three companions,” Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas said in a television interview Wednesday, Sept. 29.
He said Party-Lists can only have one companion.
“We will traffic the flow of candidates one at a time. It will be on a first come, first serve basis,” said Abas.
For his part, Comelec Spokesman James Jimenez said they want the COC filing activities to be sober that’s why they opted to transfer the COC filing for national posts at Sofitel.
“One of the main things of the filing of COCs this year is that we really went to great extent to make sure that the filing would be sober,” he said.
“We located it there to provide better security for our filers and prevent crowds from forming outside the filing area,” added Jimenez.
Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What is your reaction to this newest development? Does the filing of candidacies at the COMELEC encourage you to vote in the May 2022 elections?
You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.
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