GUIDELINES ON THE ESTABLISHMENT AND OPERATION OF COMELEC CHECKPOINTS IN CONNECTION WITH THE MAY 13, 2013 AUTOMATED SYNCHRONIZED NATIONAL, LOCAL AND ARMM REGIONAL ELECTIONS
Promulgation: 18 December 2012
WHEREAS, to effectively implement the firearms ban during the election period, it is necessary to establish COMELEC checkpoints;
WHEREAS, there is a need to ensure that in the implementation of the proper search procedures and seizure at the COMELEC checkpoints, civil, political and human rights are not violated;
NOW, THEREFORE, The Commission on Elections, pursuant to the powers vested in it by the constitution, Omnibus Election Code and other election laws, RESOLVED to promulgate, as it hereby RESOLVES to promulgate the following guidelines:
SECTION. 1. Comelec Checkpoints.- There shall be at least one COMELEC checkpoint in each city/municipality. However, additional checkpoints may be established at the discretion of the highest ranking official of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) or the Philippine National Police (PNP) in the city/municipality.
Sec. 2. Checkpoint location. — The officials mentioned in the 0 immediately preceding section shall, in consultation with the city/municipal Election Officer (EO), establish Comelec checkpoints in their respective areas of jurisdiction only in places which are well-lighted. In areas where electric light is not available, artificial lighting shall be provided for the purpose.
Sec. 3. Checkpoint signboard. – Every COMELEC checkpoint shall have a signboard measuring three feet by four feet (3′x4′), to clearly identify the place as a COMELEC checkpoint from a reasonable distance.
The following shall be printed/painted on both sides of the signboard in bold letters on a white background:
Please bear with us
Thank you for your cooperation.
Sec. 4. Notice of location of checkpoints. – The commanding officer/team leader of the checkpoint must give notice to the Election Officer, as well as non-government organizations and other civic organizations about the establishment and location of Comelec checkpoints in the locality.
Sec. 5. Spot checkpoint. - Where the circumstances warrant, spot checkpoints may be established in locations other than those mentioned in the preceding section. Before establishing such checkpoints, the coordinating officer/team leader shall give notice to the Election Officer.
Sec. 6. Personnel to man checkpoint. – Any unit designated to man a Comelec checkpoint must be led by a regular member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines or the Philippine National Police with a rank of at least lieutenant/inspector.
AFP and PNP personnel manning the checkpoints must be in complete uniform and shall not be under the influence of liquor/drug. Any violation hereof shall make the offender and his commanding officer jointly liable for administrative/criminal action.
Sec. 7. Briefing by the commanding officer/team leader. – A briefing must be given by the. commanding officer/team leader to all members of the unit who will be designated to man the checkpoints, with emphasis on the proper manner of searching with reasonableness.
Sec. 8. Searches at Comelec checkpoint. - Any search at any Comelec checkpoint must be made only by members of the unit designated to man the same. It should be done in a manner which will impose minimum inconvenience upon the person or persons so searched, to the end that civil, political and human rights of the person/s are not violated.
As a rule, a valid search must be authorized by a search warrant duly issued by an appropriate authority. However, a warrantless search can be made in the following cases:
- Moving vehicles and the seizure of evidence made in plain view;
- As long as the vehicle is neither searched nor its occupant/s subjected to a body search, and the inspection of the vehicle is merely limited to a visual search;
- When the occupant/s of the vehicle appear to be nervous or suspicious or exhibit unnatural reaction.
- If the officer conducting the search has reasonable or probable cause to believe that either the occupant/s is a law offender or that the instrumentality or evidence pertaining to the commission of a crime can be found in the vehicle to be searched; or
- On the basis of prior confidential information which are reasonably corroborated by other attendant matters.
Sec. 9. Rights of person arrested. – Any person arrested at a Comelec checkpoint must be treated humanely and with utmost respect for his constitutional rights. He must be informed of the following rights:
- To remain silent, and be informed that anything he says may be used against him in court. This right cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel;
- To have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice, but if he cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. The right cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel;
- To be released from detention if no charges have been filed against him within eighteen (18) hours from the arrest, unless he is charged under P.D. 1866, as amended.
Sec. 10. Record of arrest. – Any arrest made at a Comelec checkpoint shall be immediately and chronologically recorded in a logbook for the purpose, stating the circumstances of the arrest and other particulars about the person and confiscated weapons, ammunitions and materials.
The arresting officer shall execute an affidavit of arrest stating clearly and distinctly the facts and circumstances surrounding the arrest.
Sec. 11. Report and turn-over of arrested person. – Any person arrested at a Comelec checkpoint including the confiscated material, weapon, ammunition and material, must be turned-over to the nearest law enforcement station or office together with the corresponding affidavit/s of arrest for proper action.
The chief of police/detachment commander concerned shall conduct a preliminary examination and submit the result thereof to the provincial/city prosecutor for preliminary investigation, coy furnished the Law Department, E0, and their respective operation centers.
Sec. 12. Report of the Law Department. – The Law Department shall submit to the COMELEC a progress report stating the particulars of all arrests made during the election period.
Sec. 13. Effectivity. – This resolution shall take effect on the seventh day after its publication in two (2) daily newspapers of general circulations.
Sec. 14. Dissemination. The Education and Information Department shall cause the publication of this resolution in two (2) daily newspaper of general circulation, and shall furnish copies hereof to the AFP Chief of Staff, the Director General of the Philippine National Police, the Regional Election Directors, the Provincial Election Supervisors and the Election Officers, copies of said resolution.
|(Sgd.) SIXTO S. BRILLANTES, JR.
|(Sgd.) RENE V. SARMIENTO
|(Sgd.) LUCENITO N. TAGLE
|(Sgd.) ARMANDO C. VELASCO
|(Sgd.) ELIAS R. YUSOPH
|(Sgd.) CHRISTIAN ROBERT S. LIM
|(Sgd.) MARIA GRACIA CIELO M. PADACA
Proclamation No. 459, s. 2012
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES
PROCLAMATION NO. 459
DECLARING THE REGULAR HOLIDAYS, SPECIAL (NON-WORKING) DAYS, AND SPECIAL HOLIDAY (FOR ALL SCHOOLS) FOR THE YEAR 2013
WHEREAS, Republic Act (RA) No. 9492, dated July 24, 2007, amended Section 26, Chapter 7, Book I of Executive Order (EO) No. 292, also known as the Administrative Code of 1987, by declaring certain days (specific or movable) as special or regular holidays;
WHEREAS, RA No. 9492 provides that holidays, except those which are religious in nature, are moved to the nearest Monday unless otherwise modified by law, order or proclamation;
WHEREAS, RA No. 9849 provides that the Eidul Adha shall be celebrated as a national holiday;
WHEREAS, the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored and ushered political, social and economic reforms in the country, serves as an inspiration to Filipinos everywhere as a nation and as a people:
WHEREAS, Saturday, 30 March 2013 falls between Good Friday and Easter Sunday; Black Saturday, falling between Good Friday and Easter Sunday, has been traditionally declared a special (non-working) day throughout the country because the observance of Holy Week is one of our people’s most cherished traditions and they must be given the full and uninterrupted opportunity to ponder on the significance of Holy Week and to properly observe its traditions with religious fervor, without prejudice to public interest;
WHEREAS, Saturday, 2 November 2013, falling between Friday, 1 November 2013 (All Saints Day) and Sunday, has been traditionally declared a special (non-working) day throughout the country;
WHEREAS, to give full opportunity to our people to properly observe All Saints Day with all its religious fervor which invariably requires them to travel to and from different regions in the country, Saturday, 2 November 2013, may be declared as a special (non-working) day without detriment to public interest;
WHEREAS, in order to foster closer family ties and enable our countrymen to observe Christmas more meaningfully, it is but fitting to declare December 24, (Tuesday) as an additional special (non-working) day throughout the country;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BENIGNO S. AQUINO III, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution as President of the Philippines, do hereby declare:
SECTION 1. The following regular holidays and special days for the year 2013 shall be observed in the country:
|A. Regular Holidays|
|New Year’s Day
Araw ng Kagitingan
|January 1 (Tuesday)
April 9 (Tuesday)
National Heroes Day
|May 1 (Wednesday)
June 12 (Wednesday)
August 26 (Last Monday of August)
November 30 (Saturday)
December 25 (Wednesday)
December 30 (Monday)
|B. Special (Non-Working) Days|
Ninoy Aquino Day
All Saints Day
Additional special (non-working) days
Last Day of the Year
August 21 (Wednesday)
November 1 (Friday)
November 2 (Saturday)
December 24 (Tuesday)
December 31 (Tuesday)
|C. Special Holiday (for all schools)|
|EDSA Revolution Anniversary||February 25 (Monday)|
SECTION 2 The proclamations declaring national holidays for the observance of Eid’l Fitr and Eidul Adha shall hereafter be issued after the approximate dates of the Islamic holidays have been determined in accordance with the Islamic calendar (Hijra) or the lunar calendar, or upon Islamic astronomical calculations, whichever is possible or convenient. To this end, the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) shall inform the Office of the President on which day the holiday shall fall.
SECTION 3. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) shall promulgate the implementing guidelines for this Proclamation.
SECTION 4. This Proclamation shall take effect immediately.
SECTION 5. This Proclamation shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the Republic of thePhilippines to be affixed.
Done in the City of Manila, this 16th day of August, in the year of Our Lord, Two Thousand and Twelve.
(Sgd.) BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
By the President:
(Sgd.) PAQUITO N. OCHOA, JR.