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11 April 2013

*UPDATE* Comelec to ban campaign motorcades on major roads for May 2013 elections

Words by Jade Lu | Photo courtesy of Fung Yu of
comelec campaign
The Comelec has just published the list of 22 areas where campaign motorcased are prohibited. Motorcades on minor roads, on the other hand, while allowed, are required to submit prior notice to the MMDA so they can reroute traffic.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has put a ban on candidates running in the May 2013 elections from campaigning on major thoroughfares through the use of motorcades. According to Comelec Chief Sixto Brillantes Jr, the resolution will most likely take effect within the week, with 18 major roads intended to be included in the ban including EDSA, C-5, SLEX, and Taft Avenue.
Although motorcades will still be allowed on all minor streets, banning them on these busier roads will help in preventing additional traffic during the campaign season.
Comelec's list of 22 disallowed areas for campaign motorcades:
Quezon Avenue
Marcos Highway
Commonwealth Avenue
España Boulevard
E. Rodriguez Avenue              
Ramon Magsaysay Avenue      
President Quirino Avenue
Aurora Boulevard
Ortigas Avenue
Shaw Boulevard
MIA Road
Domestic Road
Andrews Avenue
South Superhighway
Taft Avenue
Roxas Boulevard
Araneta Avenue
A.H. Lacson Street
Rizal Avenue
A. Bonifacio Avenue
As for political rallies, “Rallies are still subject to the permission of local government agencies,” according to Brillantes, but the Comelec resolution also plans to include them in the guidelines.
"This will greatly help the MMDA in effectively managing vehicular traffic during the campaign period," remarked the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), who is also actively seeking ways in minimizing traffic this election season.
MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino is adamant about politicians taking this regulation seriously, saying unauthorized campaign activities on major roads “will not be a mere traffic violation but an election offense,” even deeming candidates worthy of disqualification in serious cases. He adds, “We should draft and implement strict guidelines. Any form of violation should be taken seriously, regardless of political affiliations. The candidates’ right to campaign is not absolute.”
It’s good to see two government agencies working together, and working together well. We are looking forward to smooth traffic flow in the coming election seasons.