Comelec: June 8 last day for filing of SOCEs

May 22, 2022 Lee Ann P. Ducusin 293 views

THE Commission on Elections has reminded candidates who vied for positions in the May 9 national and local elections that they have until June 8 to file their statements of contributions and expenditures or SOCE.

Comelec acting spokesman Atty. Rex Laudiangco said that the Comelec, sitting as the National Board of Canvassers, issued the reminder as it warned that failure to comply may result in administrative charges and penalties including disqualification from running for public office.

“Pinapaalala namin sa inyo na mayroong karampatang administrative penalties kapag di kayo nakapag-file ng inyong SOCE on time. Lalong-lalo na sa dalawang beses na na hindi nakapag-file ng SOCE, mayroon pong administrative penalty yan ng perpetual disqualification under RA 7166,” he said.

Section 14 of Republic Act 7166 or the Synchronized Elections Act states that every candidate or treasurer of a political party shall file in duplicate with the offices of the Comelec the “full, true and itemized statement of all contributions and expenditures in connection with the election” within 30 days after the elections.

Candidates who will not file will be charged with an administrative offense and will be liable to pay a fine ranging from P1,000 to P30,000.00 at the discretion of the poll body with the exemption of aspirants in the barangay level.

For a winning bet, failure to comply may result in his or her assumption of office getting withheld.

The Comelec further advised candidates to be transparent in filing their SOCEs, saying their campaign finance office will be verifying their documents.

“Una sa lahat, ‘yun pong SOCE…lahat ito ay notarized so that’s under oath. Kapag kayo po ay nagsinungaling o nandaya dyan pwede namin kayong kasuhan ng perjury. Second, pumunta tayo sa administrative penalties…kapag two times di nag fi-file ng statements kayo ay maaaring makasuhan ng administrative case at mapatawan ng administrative penalties na perpetual disqualification.

Marami na po kaming na disqualify for failure to file the statement,” Laudiangco said.

“Punta tayo sa mas mabigat pa, yung nage-exceed sa expenditures. Ito po ay election offense. Election offense so then again may pagkakakulong kasong criminal,” he added.

Section 13 of RA 7166 provides the limitation of authorized expenses of candidates and political parties. It states that candidates vying for presidency and vice-presidency shall spend P10 for every voter currently registered in the constituency where he filed his certificate of candidacy.

Aspirants with political parties will be allowed to spend P3 for every voter while independent candidates will be allowed up to P5.

Political parties, for their part, are allowed up to P5 for every voter currently registered in the constituency or constituencies where it has official candidates. By Lee Ann P. Ducusin