ELECTION LAWS OF THE PHILIPPINES THE FAIR ELECTION ACT Republic Act No. 9006 RULES AND REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING REPUBLIC ACT NO. 9006 OTHERWISE KNOWN AS "FAIR ELECTION ACT" FOR THE MAY 14, 2001 NATIONAL AND LOCAL ELECTIONSAN ACT TO ENHANCE THE HOLDING OF FREE, ORDERLY, HONEST, PEACEFUL AND CREDIBLE ELECTIONS THROUGH FAIR ELECTION PRACTICES Pursuant to Section 13 of Republic Act No. 9006, otherwise known as the "Fair Election Act," the Commission onElections has RESOLVED to promulgate, as it hereby promulgates the following implementing rules andregulations for the May 14, 2001 National and Local Elections:Section 1. Definition of Terms. - As used in this resolution: a. "Election campaign" or "partisan political activity" refers to any act designed to promote the election or defeat of a particular candidate or candidates to a public office which may include any of the following: i. Forming organizations, associations, clubs, committees or other groups of persons for the purpose of campaigning for or against a candidate; ii. Holding political caucuses, conferences, meetings, rallies, parades or other similar assemblies for the purpose of soliciting votes and/or undertaking any campaign or propaganda for or against a candidate; iii. Making speeches, announcements or commentaries, or holding interviews for or against the election of any candidate for public office; iv. Publishing or distributing campaign literature or materials designed to support or oppose the election of any candidate; and v. Directly or indirectly soliciting votes, pledges or support for or against any candidate. b. "Candidate" refers to any person aspiring for or seeking an elective public office who has filed his certificate of candidacy or any registered party, organization or coalition that has filed a manifestation to participate under the party-list system. c. "Political Advertisement" refers to any matter broadcasted, published, printed, or exhibited, which draws the attention of the public or a segment thereof to promote or oppose, directly or indirectly, the election of a particular candidate or candidates to a public office. In the broadcast media, political advertisements may take the form of spots, guesting in TV shows and radio programs, live or taped announcement, billboards, cow-catchers, identification spots, riders, tags, hitchhikers, teasers, and other forms of advertising messages or announcements used by commercial advertisers. d. "Media practitioner" refers to a person who is not employed by the media entity but performs similar functions or has control over what is printed or broadcasted, such as, talent or a block timer. e. "Election survey" refers to the measurement of opinions and perceptions of the voters as regards a candidate’s popularity, qualifications, platforms or matters of public discussion in relation to the election, including voter’s preference for candidates or publicly discussed issues during the campaign period. f. "Exit polls" refers to a species of electoral survey conducted by qualified individuals or groups of individuals for the purpose of determining the probable result of an election by confidentially asking randomly selected votes whom they have voted for, immediately after they have officially cast their ballots.Sec. 2. Prohibited campaign. - It is unlawful for any person, or for any political party or association of persons toengage in an election campaign or partisan political activity, outside of the campaign periods.Any election campaign or partisan political activity is prohibited on Holy Thursday, Good Friday, day beforeelection day and on election day.Sec. 3. Mass media columnist, announcer or personality running for public office or is a campaign volunteer. -Any mass media columnist, commentator, announcer, reporter, on-air correspondent or personality who is acandidate for any elective public office or is a campaign volunteer for or employed or retained in any capacity by
any candidate or political party shall be deemed resigned, if so required by their employer, or shall take a leave ofabsence from his/her work as such during the campaign period: Provided, That any media practitioner who is anofficial of a political party or a member of the campaign staff of a candidate or political party shall not use his/hertime or space to favor any candidate or political party.Sec. 4. Rallies, meetings and other political activities. - Subject to the requirements of local ordinances on theissuance of permits, any political party supporting official candidates or any candidate, individually or jointlywith other aspirants, may hold peaceful political meetings, rallies or other similar activities during the campaignperiod.Sec. 5. Application for permit to hold public meetings, rallies or other political activities. - All applications forpermits to hold public meetings, rallies and other similar political activities shall be filed with the authorized cityor municipal official, who shall acknowledge receipt thereof in writing. Immediately after its filing, the applicationshall be posted in a conspicuous place in the city hall or municipal building.The official before whom the application is filed shall submit to the Election Officer on the first working day ofeach week the list of applications, if any, filed during the previous week and the action taken thereon.Sec. 6. Action on application. - a. Within three (3) days after filing of an application for permit to hold public meetings, rallies or other political activities, the local authority concerned shall act in writing on said application. Any application not acted upon within three (3) days from the date of its filing shall be deemed approved. b. In acting on the application, the approving official shall give all candidates, political parties, organizations or coalitions equal and fair opportunity as to date, time and place, to hold public political meetings or rallies. In the last week of the campaign periods, all independent candidates, political parties, organizations and coalitions shall be entitled to hold at least one public meeting or rally, at the time to be chosen by the applicant, in the public plaza or place where public political meetings or rallies are usually held. The approval of an application shall include a condition, that a statement of expenses incurred in connection with the meeting or rally be submitted to the Election Officer as prescribed in the next succeeding section. c. An application for permit may be denied on the ground that a prior written application by another candidate or political party, organization or coalition for the same purpose has been approved. Denial of any application may be appealed to the Provincial Election Supervisor, and in the National Capital Region to the Regional Election Director, who shall decide the same within forty-eight (48) hours after the filing of the appeal, and shall give notice of the decision to the parties. The decision shall be final and executory.Sec. 7. Notice to Election Officer and report on expenses. - Any candidate or political party, organization orcoalition intending to organize and hold any public meeting rally or political activity in the city or municipalityshall notify the Election Officer concerned thereof and, within seven (7) working days after the said publicmeeting, rally or activity, submit to said officer a statement of expenses incurred in connection therewith.Sec. 8. Prohibited acts during public meetings. - It is unlawful for any candidate, political party, organization orany person to give or accept, free of charge, directly or indirectly, transportation, food and drinks, or anything ofvalue during and within the five (5) hours before and after a public meeting, or to give or contribute, directly orindirectly, money or things of value for such purpose.Sec. 9. Lawful election propaganda. - Election propaganda, whether on television, cable television, radio,newspaper or any other medium is hereby allowed for all registered political parties, sectoral parties,organizations or coalitions participating under the party-list election and for all bona fide candidates seekingnational and local elective positions subject to the limitation on authorized expenses of candidates and politicalparties, observance of truth in advertising.Lawful election propaganda shall include: a. Pamphlets, leaflets, cards, decals, stickers or other written or printed materials the size of which does not exceed eight and one-half inches in width and fourteen inches in length; b. Handwritten or printed letters urging voters to vote for or against any particular political party or
candidate for public office; c. Cloth paper or cardboard posters, whether framed or posted, with an area not exceeding two (2) feet by three (3) feet; except that, at the site and on the occasion of a public meeting or rally, streamers not exceeding three (3) feet by eight (8) feet in size, shall be allowed: Provided, That said streamers may be displayed five (5) days before the date of the meeting or rally and shall be removed within twenty-four (24) hours after said meeting or rally; d. Paid advertisements in print or broadcast media subject to the requirements set forth in Sec. 13 hereof; and e. All other forms of election propaganda not prohibited by the Omnibus Election Code or of these rules.Sec. 10. Petition for authority to use other election propaganda. - Any person seeking authority to use otherforms of election propaganda not covered by those enumerated in the immediately preceding section and notprohibited by law may file with the COMELEC a verified petition, in eight (8) legible copies, describing the electionpropaganda sought to be authorized, with samples thereof.Upon receipt of the petition, the COMELEC shall set it for hearing and send notice thereof to the petitioner. Onthe day following the receipt of the notice of hearing, the petitioner shall cause the publication of the petition,together with notice of hearing, in two (2) newspapers of general circulation, notifying the COMELEC of suchaction.If the COMELEC authorizes the use of the requested election propaganda, the authorization shall published in two(2) newspapers of general circulation within one week after the authorization has been granted.Sec. 11. Authorized expenses of candidates and political parties. - The aggregate amount that a candidate orregistered political party may spend for election campaign shall be as follows: a. For official candidates of political parties Three pesos (P3.00) for every voter registered in the constituency where they filed their certificate of candidacy. b. For candidates not supported by any political party Five pesos (P5.00) for every such voter. c. Party/organization and coalition participating in the party-list system Five pesos (P5.00) for every voter. d. For political parties and coalition Five pesos (P5.00) for every voter currently registered in the constituency or constituencies where they have official candidates.Sec. 12. Posting of campaign materials. - Candidates and party-list groups may post any lawful campaignmaterials in: a. Authorized common poster areas in public places as provided in the following Section; and b. Private places with the consent of the owner.Sec. 13. Common poster areas. - Candidates of political parties, party list groups and independent candidates,upon authority by the Election Officer, may erect, at their expense, common poster areas subject to the followinglimitations: a. The total number of common poster areas for each political party, party-list group and independent candidate shall not exceed ten (10) in each city or municipality by councilor district; b. The location of common poster areas shall be in public places such as plazas, markets, barangay centers and the like; c. The size of each common poster area shall not exceed the following dimensions: 1. For political parties and party-list groups 12 feet by 16 feet or its equivalent but not exceeding a total area of 192 square feet; and 2. For independent candidate 4 feet by 6 feet or its equivalent but not exceeding a total area of 24 square feet. d. The individual posters that may be posted in each common poster area shall not exceed 2 feet x 3 feet. However, in case of space limitations, posters of candidates of political parties may be reduced to a uniform size to accommodate all candidates. e. The common poster areas allocated to political parties, party-list groups and independent candidates
shall not be used by another political party, party-list group and independent candidate even with the consent of the former. f. The size of the common poster area for party-list groups shall not exceed 12 feet x 16 feet, or its equivalent but not exceeding a total area of 192 square feet and shall be allocated at the rate of one common poster area for every thirty-two party list groups. In case there are less than thirty-two (32) party-list groups applying to put up the common poster area, the Election Officer shall reduce the size of the common poster area depending on the total number of applicants therefor, provided that each group is entitled to post one 2 feet x 3 feet poster. In case there are more than thirty-two (32) party-list groups applying to put up the common poster area, the Election Officer shall determine the appropriate number and size of common poster areas to equitably accommodate the total number of applicants for common poster areas, subject to the provisions of the immediately two preceding paragraphs. In posting their individual posters, the party-list groups shall agree among themselves who will share each common poster area. In case no agreement is reached, the Election Officer shall group the parties alphabetically. g. Political parties, party-list groups and independent candidates shall file their applications to erect common poster areas with the Office of the Election Officer, within five (5) days from effectivity of this Resolution.In all cases, the parties shall agree among themselves how their individual posters in the common poster areashall be placed. In case no agreement is reached the Election Officer shall determine said placement by drawing oflots.The Election Officer shall act on the applications within three (3) days from receipt thereof. For this purpose, theElection Officer shall determine whether the proposed sites where the common poster areas will be erected arepublic places with heavy pedestrian or vehicular traffic, or business or commercial centers, or densely populatedareas, and equitably and impartially allocate the sites to ensure maximum exposure of the lawful propagandamaterials of all parties, party-list groups and independent candidates.Any political party, party-list group or independent candidate aggrieved by the action of the Election Officer mayappeal the same within two (2) days from receipt of the order of the Election Officer to the Provincial ElectionSupervisor, or in the case of the National Capital Region to its Regional Election Director, who shall decide thematter within two (2) days from receipt of the appeal, furnishing copies of said decision to the parties concernedand to the Law Department of the COMELEC. The decision shall be final and executory.Within seven (7) days after the elections, the candidates and party-list groups which applied for the putting up ofa common poster area shall tear down the same at their own expense and restore the site into its originalcondition.Sec. 14. Requirements for published or printed and broadcast election propaganda. a. Any newspaper, newsletter, newsweek, gazette, or magazine advertising, posters, pamphlets, comic books, circulars, handbills, bumper stickers, streamers, simple list of candidates or any published or printed political matter and any broadcast of election propaganda by television or radio for or against a candidate or group of candidates to any public office shall bear and be identified by the reasonable legible or audible words " political advertisement paid for," followed by the true and correct name and address of the candidate or party for whose benefit the election propaganda was printed or aired. b. If the publication is donated by the publishing firm, or the broadcast is given free of charge by the radio or television station, it shall be identified by the words "printed free of charge" or "airtime for this broadcast was provided free of charge by" followed by the true and correct name and address of the donor. c. Print, broadcast or outdoor advertisements donated to the candidate or political party shall not be printed, published, broadcast or exhibited without the written acceptance by the said candidate or political party. Such written acceptance shall be attached to the advertising contract and shall be submitted to the COMELEC as provided hereunder. d. All media entities shall furnish the COMELEC with a copy of all contracts for advertising, promoting or opposing any political party or the candidacy of any person for public office within five (5) days after its signing. In every case, it shall be signed by the donor, the candidate concerned or by the duly authorized representative of the political party.
Sec. 15. Rates of political propaganda. During the election period, media outlets shall charge registered politicalparties and bona fide candidates a discounted rate of thirty percent (30%) for television, twenty percent (20%) forradio and ten percent (10%) for print over the average rates charged during the first three quarters of the calendaryear preceding the elections.Sec. 16. Persons authorized to incur election expenditures. No person, except the candidate, the treasurer of apolitical party, or any person authorized by said candidate or political party, shall make an expenditure in supportof or in opposition to any candidate or political party.The authority of any person to incur election expenditures for or on behalf of any candidate or political partyshall be in writing, signed by the candidate or treasurer of the political party, and shall state the full name andexact address of said representative and the expenditures so authorized. A copy of such authority shall beattached to the statement of contributions or expenditures.Sec. 17. Equal access to media time and space. All candidates shall have equal access to media time and spacesubject to the following guidelines: a. Print advertisements shall not exceed one-fourth (1/4) page, in broadsheet and one-half (1/2) page in tabloids thrice a week per newspaper, magazine or other publications, during the campaign period. b. Each bona fide candidate or registered political for a national elective office shall be entitled to not more than one hundred twenty (120) minutes of television and one hundred eighty (180) minutes of radio advertisement for the entire duration of the campaign period, whether by purchase or donation. c. Each bona fide candidate or registered political party for a locally elective office shall be entitled to not more than sixty (60) minutes of television advertisement and ninety (90) minutes of radio advertisement for the entire duration of the campaign period, whether by purchase or donation. d. If broadcast is given free of charge by the radio or television station, it shall be identified by the words "Airtime for this broadcast was provided free of charge by" followed the true and correct name and address of the broadcast entity. For this purpose, each broadcast station or entity shall submit to the Education and Information Department and the Executive Director of the COMELEC a certified true copy of its certificates of performance for the review and verification of the frequency, date, time and duration of advertisement broadcasts for any candidate or political party. It shall preserve the broadcast for production before the COMELEC whenever required. I. The certificates of performance for national positions: i. First report, within the second week of their campaign period; ii. Second report, within the sixth week of their campaign period; iii. Third report, within the last week of their campaign period; and iv. Last report, within two days before election day. II. For candidates for local positions: i. First report, within the second week of their campaign period; ii. Second report, within the third week of their campaign period; iii. Third report, within the last week of their campaign period; and iv. Last report, within two days before election day. e. All media entities shall furnish the Education and Information Department, the Executive Director and the Law Department of the COMELEC with a copy of all contracts for advertising, promoting or opposing a political party or the candidacy of any person for public office within five (5) days after its signing. In every case, it shall be signed by the donor, the candidate concerned or by the duly authorized representative of the political party. f. No franchise or permit to operate a radio or television station shall be granted or issued, suspended or cancelled during the election period. g. No radio, cable television or television station shall allow the scheduling of any program or permit any sponsor to manifestly favor or oppose any candidate or political party by unduly or repeatedly referring to or including said candidate and/or political party in such program without prejudice to the right of said
broadcast entities to air accounts of significant news or newsworthy events and views on matter of public interest. h. All members of media, television, radio or print, shall scrupulously report and interpret the news, taking care not to suppress essential facts or distort the truth by omission or improper emphasis. They shall recognize the duty to air the other side and the duly to correct substantive errors promptly. i. In case the monitoring by the Education and Information Department shows that there are violations of the provisions prescribed in this section, a report thereon shall be submitted to the Law Department together with the corresponding copies of the contracts for advertising, broadcast logs and certificates of performance, for the filing of the appropriate charges against such violators.Sec. 18. COMELEC space and time. - The COMELEC shall, subject to availability of funds, procure print space andair time, for the following purposes: A. For announcing candidacies for national offices Print space The COMELEC shall, upon payment of just compensation, procure print space from at least three (3) national newspapers of general circulation wherein candidates for national office can announce their candidacies. Such space be allocated free of charge equally and impartially to all candidates for national office on three different calendar days: 1. First day, within the first week of the campaign period; 2. Second day, within the fifth week of the campaign period; 3. Third day, within the tenth week of the campaign period. For purposes of the May 14, 2001 elections, the first day when candidates may announce their candidacies shall be on the third week of the campaign period. Airtime The COMELEC shall also procure free airtime from at least three (3) national television networks and three (3) national radio networks wherein candidates for national office can announce their candidacies, subject to the following limitations: Airtime shall be allocated free of charge equally and impartially, through raffle by the Executive Director, to all candidates for national office on three different calendar days: 1. First day, within the first week of the campaign period; 2. Second day, within the fifth week of the campaign period; 3. Third day, within the tenth week of the campaign period. For purposes of the May 14, 2001 elections, the first day when candidates may announce their candidacies shall be on the third week of the campaign period. Each advertisement shall be in the form of a maximum of thirty (30) seconds spot. Costs of production of political advertisements shall be at the expense of the candidate or political party. B. For COMELEC information dissemination Print space The COMELEC shall, upon payment of just compensation, procure print space in at least one (1) newspaper of general circulation in the province or city, which shall be known as COMELEC Space, to be utilized exclusively for public information dissemination on election related concerns. In the absence of said newspaper of general circulation, publication shall be done in any other magazine or periodical in the province or city. Airtime The COMELEC shall also procure airtime free of charge from at least one (1) major broadcasting station or entity in every province or city, which shall be known as COMELEC Time, to be utilized exclusively for public information dissemination on election related concerns. In the absence of a major station or entity, broadcasting shall be done in any radio or television station in the province or city.Sec. 19. Report of contractors or business firms. - Every printer, manufacturer, seller or other person or firm towhom an election expenditure for election propaganda is made, shall, within thirty (30) days after the date of theelection, file with the COMELEC a report setting forth the full name and exact address of every candidate,treasurer, or the political party or other person making such expenditure, the nature or purpose of eachexpenditure, and the date and cost thereof. The report shall be signed and sworn to by the contractor or dealer or,in case of a business firm or association by its president or general manager (See Annex"C" for sample form).
It shall be the duty of the person or firm to whom an election expenditure is made to require every person makingan expenditure for and in behalf of a candidate or political party to present and submit a written authority toincur said expenditures, and to keep and preserve at its place or business, subject to inspection by the COMELECor its authorized representatives, copies of such written authority, contract, vouchers, invoices and other recordsor documents relative to said expenditures for a period of three (3) years after the date of the election.It is unlawful for any supplier, contractor or business firm to enter into any contract involving electionexpenditures with representatives of candidates or political parties who do not have such written authority.Sec. 20. Removal, destruction or defacement of lawful election propaganda prohibited. -During the campaignperiod it is unlawful for any person to remove, destroy, obliterate or, in any manner, deface or tamper with, orprevent the distribution of any unlawful election propaganda enumerated in Sec. 9 hereof.Sec. 21. Prohibited forms of election propaganda. - a. No movie, cinematography or documentary portraying the life or biography of a candidate shall be publicly exhibited in a theater, television station or any public forum during the campaign period. b. No movie, cinematography or documentary portrayed by an actor or media personality who is himself a candidate shall be publicly exhibited in a theater, television station or any public forum during the campaign period; c. No campaign or propaganda materials shall be posted outside of the authorized common poster areas of political parties, party-list groups and independent candidates or in private places without the consent of the owner; d. No campaign or propaganda materials in excess of the size authorized by law shall be posted or distributed in any place.Sec. 22. Removal, confiscation or destruction of prohibited election propaganda materials. - Any prohibited formof election propaganda materials shall be summarily confiscated, removed, destroyed or torn down by anyrepresentative of the COMELEC, at the expense of the candidate, political party, sectoral party, organization orcoalition, or person responsible for the prohibited election propaganda.Any person, political party, sectoral party, organization or coalition, association, agency, office, bureau ordepartment of the government may file with the COMELEC, through its field office, a petition to confiscate,remove, destroy and/or stop the distribution of any propaganda material on the ground that the same is offensiveto public morals, libelous, illegal, prohibited, subversive or irrelevant to the election issues.The COMELEC, after the summary hearing, shall resolve the petition within six (6) hours from the time it issubmitted for decision. Where the parties concerned cannot be contacted or are unknown or refuse to appear atthe hearing, the COMELEC may decide the petition ex parte.The COMELEC, motu proprio, may immediately order the removal, destruction and/or confiscation of anyprohibited propaganda material, or those materials which contain statements or representations that are illegal,prohibited, patently libelous, offensive to public morals, subversive or which tend to incite sedition or rebellion.Sec. 23. Right to reply. - All registered parties and bona fide candidates shall have the right to reply to chargespublished against them. Their reply shall be given publicity by the newspaper, television and/or radio stationwhich first printed or aired the charges with the same prominence or in the same page or section or in the sametime slot as the first statement.Sec. 24. Election surveys. - During the election period, any person, whether natural or juridical, candidate ororganization may conduct an election survey. The survey shall be published with the following information: a. The name of the person, candidate, party or organization who commissioned or paid for the survey; b. The name of the person, polling firm or survey organization who conducted the survey; c. The period during which the survey was conducted, the methodology used, including the number of individual respondents and the areas from which they were selected, and the specific questions asked; d. The margin of error of the survey;
e. For each question for which the margin of error is greater than that reported under paragraph (d), the margin of error for that question; f. A mailing address and telephone number, indicating it as an address or telephone number at which the sponsor can be contacted to obtain a written report regarding the survey in accordance with paragraph (g) hereof; g. The survey together with raw data gathered to support its conclusions shall be available for inspection, copying and verification by the COMELEC or by a registered political party or a bona fide candidate, or by any COMELEC accredited citizen’s arm. A reasonable fee sufficient to cover the costs of inspection, copying and verification may be charged; and h. Surveys affecting national candidates shall not be published fifteen (15) days before an election and surveys affecting local candidates shall not be published seven (7) days before an election.Sec. 25. Exit polls. - Exit polls may only be taken subject to the following requirements: a. Pollsters shall not conduct their surveys within fifty (50) meters from the polling place, whether said survey is taken in a home, dwelling place and other places; b. Pollsters shall wear distinctive clothing and prominently wear their identification card issued by the organization he represents; c. Pollsters shall inform the voters that they may refuse to answer; and d. The result of the exit polls may be announced after the closing of the polls on election day, and must identify the total number of respondents, and the places where they were taken. Said announcement shall state that the same is unofficial and does not represent a trend.Sec. 26. Effect of filing certificate of candidacy by elective officials. - Any elective official, whether national orlocal, who has filed a certificate of candidacy for the same or any other office, shall not be considered resignedfrom his office.Sec. 27. Substitution of candidates. - In case of valid substitutions after the official ballots have been printed, thevotes cast for the substituted candidates shall be considered as stray votes but shall not invalidate the wholeballot. For this purpose, the official ballots shall provide spaces where the voters may write the name of thesubstitute candidates if they are voting for the latter: Provided, however; That if the substitute candidate is of thesame family name, this provision shall not apply.Sec. 28. Deputation. - (a) The Commission hereby deputizes the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters ng Pilipinas (KBP),Philippine Internet Service Operators (PISO), Philippine Association of Private Telephone Companies (PAPTELCO),and the Telecommunication Operators of the Philippines (TOP) to conduct, in coordination with the Educationand Information Department, regular information campaign on the proper use of any medium of communication,including the broadcast and transmission of information, during the campaign period.(b) The Commission hereby deputizes local government units to prevent, remove, destroy, confiscate or tear downany prohibited propaganda materials.Sec. 29. Election offense. - Violation of R. A. 9006 and these rules shall constitute an election offense punishableunder the first and second paragraphs of Sec. 264 of the Omnibus Election Code. Any aggrieved party may file averified complaint for violation of these rules with the Law Department of COMELEC.Sec. 30. Effectivity. - This resolution shall take effect on the seventh day after its publication in two (2)newspapers of general circulation.Sec. 31. Dissemination. - The Education and Information Department shall cause the publication of thisresolution in two (2) newspapers of general circulation, and furnish copies thereof at all field offices of theCOMELEC, and to the presidents or secretaries of all registered political parties, organizations or coalition.