FIVE days before the deadline for the submission of election spending reports, only six candidates in Cebu Province—winners and losers, both—have complied with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) requirement.
The six who filed are Rep. Luigi Quisumbing, who won a fresh term in the sixth congressional district; Provincial Board (PB) Member Miguel Antonio Magpale; and PB aspirants Sergio Restauro of the first district, Ramon “Monching” Durano V and Benjamin Batiquin Jr. of the fifth district, and Tomas Yu of the third district.
The Comelec requires all winners and losers in the May 13 elections to submit their Statements of Election Contribution and Expenses (Seces) by June 12.
The Department of Interior and Local Government warned that winning candidates can only take their oaths of office after they obtain their Comelec-issued certificate of compliance to the filing of the Sece.
The Sece will serve as basis for Comelec to determine if a candidate or party exceeded the election spending limit.
Election laws limit the total amount that a candidate spends for an election campaign at P3 per registered voter, and another P5 from his or her political party.
Independent candidates may spend P5 for every registered voter.
Magpale reported that he spent a total of P136,825.82 in the fifth district, which has 313,741 registered voters. This means, he spent about 44 centavos per voter.
Quisumbing spent a total of P788,612.40 for the sixth congressional district, which has 279,972 registered voters. This means he spent about P2.80 per voter.
Quisumbing said that his biggest spending went to the hiring of watchers, which cost him P316,000.
Durano spent P104,574 or 33 centavos per voter while Batiquin reported total expenses of P66,000 or 21 centavos for every voter in the fifth district.
Both candidates of One Cebu party lost.
Restauro, who lost his bid for another term in the PB for the first district, said he spent a total of P86,288. As the first district has 340,681 registered voters, Restauro reported spending 25 centavos per voter.
Arthur Patiga of Comelec Cebu Province said the candidate's Seces will be verified by the election agency’s law department.
The Fair Election Act penalizes candidates who fail to file the Seces with a fine of P1,000 to P30,000.