Philippines' election campaign period to end, liquor ban to start

10:40, May 09, 2010      

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Military and police personnel patrol on a street of Quirino in Manila, Philippines, May 7, 2010. The 2010 presidential and local elections will be held on May 10 throughout the Philippines. (Xinhua/Jon Fabrigar)

The 90-day campaign period for 2010 General Elections of the Philippines ends midnight Saturday, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said.

"May 8 will be the end of the campaign period. That's the day when we will see the most number of rallies, flyers, posters and banners going up. And I think it's going to be a very noisy day. It's going to be one more day that we have to endure these things, " James Jimenez, Comelec spokesman, said.

The campaign period for local candidates started on Feb. 9 while the campaign for those gunning for national posts started on March 26. Both will end simultaneously at 11:59 p.m. of May 8.

Candidates who continue selling themselves to voters after the campaign period ends face election offense case with up to six years imprisonment, suspension of the rights of suffrage and disqualification from public office, Jimenez warned.

"On May 9, it will already be illegal to give and accept free transportation, food and drinks and things of value," he added.

According to a related law, the end of the campaign period starts the liquor ban.

"By 12:01 a.m. (on Sunday), it will no longer be lawful to purchase and consume intoxicating drinks. You can no longer sell, offer, furnish, buy or take intoxicating drinks," Jimenez said.

However, the liquor ban exempts Department of Tourism- accredited hotels and other tourist-oriented establishments upon prior authority from the Comelec. Drinking of alcoholic beverages is also allowed inside the house.

Furthermore, the law states that on the election day, it is also prohibited to hold fairs, cockfights, boxing, horse races and other similar sports.

The preparations for the automated general elections on May 10 had already reached 98 percent, Jimenez said.

Source: Xinhua


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