For the nth time, poll bets, public reminded on health protocols


With only a week left before the campaign period ends, candidates and supporters must not forget minimum public health standards (MPHS) until election day itself on May 9.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government on Sunday reminded local government units (LGUs) and political parties it is up to them to observe the laws.

“We are calling LGUs to strictly enforce the Comelec (Commission on Elections) Resolution 10732 that sets the guidelines on the conduct of campaign activities complying with health protocols set by IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force,” DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said in a text message.

Año also encouraged organizers to strictly coordinate with LGUs and take note of health protocols while the Philippine National Police (PNP) and village officials are tasked to make sure that rules are followed.

“Organizers must ensure that there are safety marshals and health stations,” he said.

Año stressed that the biggest challenge is on May 9 when at least 60 million voters will troop to polling precincts nationwide.

DILG Undersecretary and spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said in a statement that the whole DILG organization is prepared to perform its role in the national and local polls.

He said 16,820 PNP personnel are dispatched for election duties and an additional 41,965 are deployed in the 5,531 Comelec-supervised checkpoints.

Two mobile force units in every province are on standby while more police units are dispatched in 104 municipalities and 14 cities identified as hotspots.

People with Covid-19 symptoms may still cast their votes in designated isolation rooms but those in quarantine are not allowed to go out.

The Department of Health will deploy its personnel and the Department of Education will ensure that there are isolation polling places.

Comelec Commissioner George Garcia said voters are not required to show negative Covid-19 test results.