The Inbox

SC stops Comelec from taking down Team Buhay/Patay tarpaulin

Comelec employees compare the allowed size for tarp against the “Conscience Vote” tarp. …

By Mikha Flores, VERA Files

The oversized tarpaulin bearing the names of senatorial and party-list candidates who were for and against the controversial Reproductive Health Bill will remain hanging outside a Bacolod church after the Supreme Court stopped the Commission on Elections from taking down the campaign material.

The high court issued Tuesday a temporary restraining order stopping Comelec from removing the Team Buhay/Team Patay Conscience Votetarpaulin. It directed the poll body to answer within 10 days the petition filed by the Diocese of Bacolod and set the case for oral arguments on March 19.

Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes Jr., who has said that their issue with the campaign material was its size, warned that the TRO might set a precedentin how campaign materials within private property might now be treated."It might encourage others to come out with all of those illegal propagandas,” he said.

Brillantes said they are not prohibiting the Church from posting election propaganda but only asking that the materialsconform with the size set by law.

"I think the first issue would be: is it an election propaganda material? If it is, then it is oversized and it does not have the necessary printing," Brillantes said. "We're not even raising any other issue. Sukatlang ho (It’s just the size)," he added.

While Comelec recognizes the Church as a private property free to post campaign propaganda,the posters should still adhere to the limits set by law. The tarpaulin in questionmeasures 6 by 10 feet, way above the legal limit of 2 by 3 feet set under the Fair Election Act.

Church officials said similar Team Buhay/Patay posters will be put up in other dioceses around the country. Fr. Melvin Castro of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) said they are planning to put up similar posters in Lipa, Batangas; Tarlac; Sorsogon; Kidapawan, Cotabato; and Borongan, Samar.

"We will not be surprised now that all the churches throughout the country will start putting this kind of a material and we will not be able to do anything about it," Brillantes said.

(VERA Files is put out by veteran journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”)


Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Indonesia rebuffs last-ditch bids to delay drug-convict executions
    Indonesia rebuffs last-ditch bids to delay drug-convict executions

    By Kanupriya Kapoor and Jane Wardell CILACAP, Indonesia/SYDNEY (Reuters) - Indonesia said the execution of nine drug traffickers would go ahead this week, rebuffing last-minute appeals from Australia and the Philippines to spare their nationals and ignoring a decision by the Constitutional Court to hear a final challenge. Australia began the day with a plea for a stay in the execution of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, saying reports that their trial had been tainted by corruption needed to …

  • Halt Indonesia drug executions until graft claims probed: Australia
    Halt Indonesia drug executions until graft claims probed: Australia

    Australia urged Indonesia Monday to delay the execution of two men for drug offences until a corruption probe into their case is complete, after a report that judges sought tens of thousands of dollars in bribes. "Bali Nine" drug traffickers Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan could face the firing squad within days, along with others from Brazil, Nigeria, the Philippines and an Indonesian prisoner. The Indonesian attorney-general's office said the executions would take place this week but did …

  • ISIS has not penetrated Phl – AFP
    ISIS has not penetrated Phl – AFP

    Security officials yesterday maintained that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has not penetrated the Philippines following an expert’s warning that the group poses a threat to the country. Abu Sayyaf, BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters), private armed groups to our knowledge are the people making problems down south,” Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Catapang Jr. said. The BIFF and the Abu Sayyaf have pledged allegiance to the ISIS but it remains uncertain whether they are …

  • Cerbo named national police intel chief
    Cerbo named national police intel chief

    Philippine National Police officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina yesterday ordered the appointment of PNP spokesman Chief Superintendent Generoso Cerbo Jr. as chief of the Directorate for Intelligence. …

  • Pump prices up anew
    Pump prices up anew

    Oil companies announced yesterday another round of price hikes with independent oil firms among the first to issue their respective announcements. PTT Philippines, the local subsidiary of Thailand’s biggest oil firm, and Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, another independent oil company, were among the first to issue their respective advisories. Seaoil Philippines also issued its announcement. “PTT Philippines will increase pump prices of gasoline by P0.70 per liter and of diesel by P0.30 per …

  • PNP to ease rules on gun permit processing
    PNP to ease rules on gun permit processing

    The Philippine National Police will simplify requirements for getting a firearm’s permit under the new gun control law, PNP officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina said yesterday. Espina said they are working to simplify the process to secure a license to own and possess firearms (LTOPF) amid complaints of excessive requirements from gun holders. Espina directed the Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) to make it easier for legitimate gun owners to comply with the …

  • Mercy for Mary Jane: Pacman joins appeals
    Mercy for Mary Jane: Pacman joins appeals

    World boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao took time out yesterday from final preparations for his $400-million megafight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. to plead for the life of a Filipina on death row in Indonesia. Pacquiao, a national hero in the Philippines, added his voice to a chorus of global opposition led by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the executions of a group of foreign drug convicts, including compatriot Mary Jane Veloso. The eight-division world champion, who will face …

  • Phl condoles as Nepal death toll hits 3,700
    Phl condoles as Nepal death toll hits 3,700

    Foreign rescue teams equipped with heavy cutting gear and relief supplies were landing round the clock at Nepal’s only international airport on the outskirts of Kathmandu, which has been devastated by Saturday’s 7.8-magnitude quake. “We need more helicopters for our rescue operations in rural areas,” said Nepal Home Affairs spokesman Laxmi Prasad Dhakal. In a statement issued yesterday, Aquino said a team from the Philippine embassy in New Delhi, India would travel to Nepal to meet the needs …


Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Poll Choice Options