Comelec OKs ‘in principle’ posting of COCs, CONAs on its website

Ian Laqui - Philstar.com
Comelec OKs �in principle� posting of COCs, CONAs on its website
Commission on Elections chairperson George Garcia oversees the voters’ registration of students during the Comelec special satellite registration for youth sector as part of the 2024 Voter Education and Registration Fair inside the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) in Intramuros, Manila on March 21, 2024. The fair aims to encourage the youth to exercise their right to vote and to be actively involved in the election process.
The STAR / Miguel de Guzman

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said that its en banc allowed "in principle" the posting of certificates of candidacy (COCs) and certificates of nomination and acceptance (CONAs) on their website for the 2025 midterm elections.

In an ambush interview with members of the press, Comelec Chairman George Garcia said that the poll body’s law and information technology department was tasked to create guidelines on how the posting of the documents would be implemented without violating the candidates’ privacy. 

"Approved na po in principle 'yung ating proposal na 'yung mismong mga Certificates of Candidacy kasama ang Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance ay atin na pong ilalathala sa website ng Comelec," Garcia said. 

(Our proposal to publish the actual Certificates of Candidacy along with the Certificates of Nomination and Acceptance on the Comelec website has been approved in principle.)

According to the Comelec chief, posting the required documents for electoral candidates is intended to ensure transparency.

“So ayun ang paraan, para mabigyan natin ng tamang panuntunan at the same time, mabigyan ng tamang impormasyon, 'yung mga kababayan natin, lalo na sa pagpili ng kanilang lider…at the same time, kung sa palagay nila hindi naman talaga kwalipikado or hindi naman talaga eligible, pwede nilang kwestyunin 'yung mismong mga kandidatong ‘yan,” Garcia said. 

(So that's the way to provide proper guidelines and at the same time give our fellow citizens the correct information, especially when choosing their leaders. Additionally, if they believe that certain candidates are not really qualified or eligible, they can challenge those candidates directly.)

“Take note, ito po ay public document at therefore, hindi dapat nililihim ‘yan,” he added. 

(Keep in mind, this is a public document and therefore should not be kept secret.)

On June 14, Garcia also suggested to the en banc that all COCs and CONAs, which will be received for the 2025 elections and future elections should be posted within two weeks after the final day of filing COCs.

The COC is a formal document that a person must file before the Comelec to officially declare their intention to run for public office in an election. 

It serves as a legal declaration that the candidate meets all the qualifications required for the position they are seeking.

On the other hand, the CONA is a document issued by a registered political party to endorse a candidate for a specific elective position formally.

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