Comelec: No cellphones, campaign shirts, ballers when voting

THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Davao Region reminded voters to follow the guidelines set by the poll body on Election Day or they will face election violation under the Omnibus Election Code.

Comelec-Davao assistant director lawyer Marlon Casquejo said voters are strictly not allowed to bring cellular phones inside the polling precincts. He added that the voters are prohibited to take selfie photos and pictures of their ballots.

"Voters could not enter their respective polling precincts, if they will be found carrying their mobile phones. So, we discourage everybody from bringing their phones, gina-dili jud ang magtext, call and take pictures," Casquejo said.

The Comelec prohibit voters, watchers, and members of the Board of Election Inspectors (BEIs) from taking photos of the ballots or voter’s receipts inside the polling precincts, as this violates the sanctity and confidentiality of the ballot.

"For the watchers and BEIs, they can bring their cellular phones but they are not allowed to use it in their designated cluster precincts. They could only use their phones for emergency purposes concerning the election," he added.

Casquejo said that another prohibited act on Election Day is bringing of the voter’s receipt out of their designated precinct. He added that issued receipts should be deposited inside the voter’s receipt receptacle inside the polling place.

Once a member of the BEI cut the receipt from the vote counting machine (VCM), the BEI will put indelible ink on the right forefinger of a voter then hand the receipt back to a voter to have it check before s/he will drop it on receptacle.

Aside from the ballot paper and the voting receipt, Casquejo said, voters are not also allowed to bring other supplies, such as the ballot secrecy folder and the marking pen. The voters could only bring their identification card, he added.

"Importante pud na bago ta mu-boto, check the ballot paper. The ballot paper must be natural, walay naka-highlight. Then make sure nga namarkahan ninyo ug tarong ang inyong gustong botohan, it should only be one," Casquejo said.

Casquejo said those caught bringing the voter’s receipt out of the polling place will face one to six years imprisonment without probation and a perpetual disqualification from holding government office and will no longer be able to vote.

Voters are not allowed to wear campaign shirts and accessories on May 9. They are also not allowed to make frivolous objections or petty complaints once they read their voters receipt, as this will be considered as an election offense.

BEIs are allowed to administer oath in order to make any complaints made regarding the voter receipt be official. Any objections a voter would raise will be included in the minutes or official log of incidents of that particular polling place.

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