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Republic of the Philippines Congress of the Philippines Metro Manila Eighth Congress Republic Act No. 6646 January 5, 1 !!

AN AC" #N"R$%&C#N' A%%#"#$NA( RE)$R*+ #N ",E E(EC"$RA( +-+"E* AN% )$R $",ER P&RP$+E+

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:: +ection 1. "itle. - This ct shall be !no"n and cited as ."he Electoral Refor/s (a0 of 1 !1.. +ection 2. (a0 'o3erning Elections. - The first local elections under the #e" Constitution and all subse$uent elections and plebiscites shall be governed by this act and by the provisions of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( other"ise !no"n as the )mnibus *lection Code of the Philippines( and other election la"s not inconsistent "ith this ct% +ection 4. 5oters in Cities. - The registered voters of a highly urbani+ed city shall not vote in the election for provincial officials of the province in "hich it is located% #o component city shall be declared or classified as a highly urbani+ed city "ithin si,ty -./0 days prior to a local election%la"phil%net The registered voters of a component city shall be entitled to vote in the election for the provincial officials of the province of "hich it is a part( unless its charter provides other"ise% +ection 4. Certificates of Can6i6acy7 Certifie6 (ist of Can6i6ates. - The certificates of candidacy shall be filed in t"elve legible signed copies "ith the offices mentioned in Section 12 of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'% 3n cities "ith more than one election registrar( the Commission on *lections( hereinafter referred to as the

Commission( shall designate the election registrar "ho shall receive the certificates of candidacy% 3n lieu of the additional copies of the certificate of candidacy e$ual to t"ice the number of polling places "hich a candidate is re$uired to file under said Section 12( the Commission shall cause to be printed certified lists of candidates containing the names of all registered candidates for each office to be voted for in each province( city or municipality immediately follo"ed by the nic!name or stage name of each candidate duly registered in his certificate of candidacy and his political party affiliation( if any% Said list shall be posted inside each voting booth during the voting period%'a"phil%net 4henever practicable( the board of inspectors shall cause said list of candidates to be "ritten clearly and legibly on the blac!board or on manila paper for posting at a conspicuous place inside the polling place% The names of all registered candidates immediately follo"ed by the nic!name or stage name shall also be printed in the election returns and tally sheets% +ection 5. Proce6ure in Cases of Nuisance Can6i6ates. -a0 5erified petition to declare a duly registered candidate as a nuisance candidate under Section .6 of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' shall be filed personally or through duly authori+ed representative "ith the Commission by any registered candidate for the same office "ithin five -20 days from the last day for the filing of certificates of candidacy% 7iling by mail not be allo"ed% -b0 4ithin three -80 days from the filing of the petition( the Commission shall issue summons to the respondent candidate together "ith a copy of the petition and its enclosures( if any% -c0 The respondent shall be given three -80 days from receipt of the summons "ithin "hich to file his verified ans"er -not a motion to dismiss0 to the petition( serving copy thereof upon the

petitioner% 9rounds for a motion to dismiss may be raised as a affirmative defenses% -d0 The Commission may designate any of its officials "ho are la"yers to hear the case and receive evidence% The proceeding shall be summary in nature% 3n lieu of oral testimonies( the parties may be re$uired to submit position papers together "ith affidavits or counter-affidavits and other documentary evidence% The hearing officer shall immediately submit to the Commission his findings( reports( and recommendations "ithin five -20 days from the completion of such submission of evidence% The Commission shall render its decision "ithin five -20 days from receipt thereof% -e0 The decision( order( or ruling of the Commission shall( after five -20 days from receipt of a copy thereof by the parties( be final and e,ecutory unless stayed by the Supreme Court% -f0 The Commission shall "ithin t"enty-four hours( through the fastest available means( disseminate its decision or the decision of the Supreme Court to the city or municipal election registrars( boards of election inspectors and the general public in the political subdivision concerned% +ection 6. Effect of %is8ualification Case. - ny candidate "ho has been declared by final :udgment to be dis$ualified shall not be voted for( and the votes cast for him shall not be counted% 3f for any reason a candidate is not declared by final :udgment before an election to be dis$ualified and he is voted for and receives the "inning number of votes in such election( the Court or Commission shall continue "ith the trial and hearing of the action( in$uiry( or protest and( upon motion of the complainant or any intervenor( may during the pendency thereof order the suspension of the proclamation of such candidate "henever the evidence of his guilt is strong% +ection 1. Petition to %eny %ue Course "o or Cancel a Certificate of Can6i6acy. - The procedure hereinabove provided

shall apply to petitions to deny due course to or cancel a certificate of candidacy as provided in Section 1& of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'% +ection !. Representati3es of Parties %uring Printing of Returns an6 9allots. - The registered political parties or coalitions of parties( or their components should there be any dissolution or division of said coalition( "hose candidates obtained at least ten percent -'/;0 of the total votes cast in the ne,t preceding senatorial election shall each have a "atcher and<or representative in the procurement and "atermar!ing of papers not be used in the printing of election returns and official ballots and in the printing( numbering( storage( and distribution thereof% +ection . Public )oru/. - The Commission shall encourage nonpolitical( non-partisan private or civic organi+ations to initiate and hold in every city and municipality( public for a at "hich all registered candidates for the same office may simultaneously and personally participate to present( e,plain( and<or debate on their campaign platforms and programs and other li!e issues% The Commission shall promulgate( the rules and regulations for the holding of such for a to assure its nonpartisan character and the e$uality of access thereto by all candidates% +ection 1:. Co//on Poster Areas. - The Commission shall designate common poster areas in the strategic public places such as mar!ets( barangay centers and the li!e "herein candidates can post( display( or e,hibit election propaganda to announce or further their candidacy% 4henever feasible common billboards may be installed by the Commission and<or non-partisan private or civic organi+ations "hich the Commission may authori+e "henever available( after due notice and hearing( in strategic places "here it may be readily seen or read( "ith the heaviest pedestrian and<or vehicular traffic in the city or municipality%

The space in such common poster areas or billboards shall be allocated free of charge( if feasible( e$uitably and impartially among the candidates in the province( city or municipality% +ection 11. Prohibite6 )or/s of Election Propagan6a. - 3n addition to the forms of election propaganda prohibited under Section &2 of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( it shall be unla"ful: -a0 to dra"( paint( inscribe( "rite( post( display or publicly e,hibit any election propaganda in any place( "hether private( or public( e,cept in the common poster areas and<or billboards provided in the immediately preceding section( at the candidate=s o"n residence( or at the campaign head$uarters of the candidate or political party: Provided( That such posters or election propaganda shall in no case e,ceed t"o ->0 feet by three -80 feet in area: Provided further( That at the site of and on the occasion of a public meeting or rally( streamers( not more than t"o ->0 and not e,ceeding three -80 feet by eight -&0 feet each may be displayed five -20 days before the date of the meeting or rally( and shall be removed "ithin t"enty-four ->?0 hours after said meeting or rally@ and -b0 for any ne"spaper( radio broadcasting or television station( or other mass media( or any person ma!ing use of the mass media to sell or to give free of charge print space or air time for campaign or other political purposes e,cept to the Commission as provided under Sections 6/ and 6> of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'% ny mass media columnist( commentator( announcement or personality "ho is a candidate for any elective public office shall ta!e a leave of absence from his "or! as such during the campaign period% +ection 12. $fficial ;atchers. - *very registered political party( coalition of political parties( and every candidate shall each be entitled to one "atcher in every polling place: Provided( That candidates for members of the Sangguniang Panlala"igan( Sangguniang Panlungsod

or Sangguniang Bayan or for city or municipal councilors belonging to the same slate or tic!et shall collectively entitled only to one "atcher% There shall also be recogni+ed t"o principal "atchers( one representing the ruling coalition and the other the dominant opposition coalition( "ho shall sit as observers in the proceedings of the board% The principal "atcher shall be designated on the basis of the recommendation of the ruling coalition( represented by the political party of the incumbent elected district representative( and of the dominant opposition coalition( represented by the political party "hich performed best or "hich polled at least ten percent -'/;0 of the votes in the last national election% duly signed appointment of a "atcher shall entitle him to recognition by the board of election inspectors and the e,ercise of his rights and discharge of his duties as such: Provided( ho"ever( That only one "atcher of each of those authori+ed to appoint them can stay at any time inside the polling place% The "atchers shall be permitted full and unimpeded access to the proceedings so that they can read the names of those "ritten on the ballots being counted "ith unaided natural vision( consistent "ith good order in the polling place% 3n addition to their rights and duties under Section '16 of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( the t"o principal "atchers representing the ruling coalition and the dominant opposition in a precinct shall( if available( affi, their signatures and thumbmar!s on the election returns for that precinct% 3f both or either of them is not available( un"illing or should they refuse to do so( any "atcher present( preferably "ith political affiliation or alignment compatible "ith that of the absent or un"illing "atcher( may be re$uired by the board of election inspectors to do so% +ection 14. 9oar6 of Election #nspectors. - The board of election inspectors to be constituted by the Commission under Section '.? of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' shall be composed of a chairman and t"o ->0 members( one of "hom shall be designated as poll cler!( all of

"hom shall be public school teachers( giving preference to those "ith permanent appointments% 3n case there are not enough public school teachers( teachers in private schools( employees in the civil service( or other citi+ens of !no"n probity and competence "ho are registered voters of the city or municipality may be appointed for election duty% +ection 14. Per %ie/s of 9oar6s of Election #nspectors an6 $ther Personnel. - The chairman and the members of the boards of election inspectors shall each be paid a per diem of )ne hundred pesos -P'//%//0 on each registration or revision day and T"o hundred pesos -P>//%//0 on election day% Support personnel from the Aepartment of *ducation( Culture and Sports shall each receive a per diem of P2/%// during election day% Supervisors( principals and other administrators of the Aepartment of *ducation( Culture and Sports( "ho may be re$uired by the Commission to perform election duties shall each be entitled to a per diem of P'//%//% Provincial( city and municipal treasurers shall each receive a per diem of P>//%// on election day% +ection 15. +ignatures of Chair/an an6 Poll Cler< at the 9ac< of E3ery 9allot. - 3n addition to the preliminary acts before the voting as enumerated in Section '6' of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( the chairman and the poll cler! of the board of election inspectors shall affi, their signatures at the bac! of each and every official ballot to be used during the voting% certification to that effect must be entered in the minutes of the voting% +ection 16. Certificates of 5otes. - fter the counting of the votes cast in the precinct and announcement of the results of the election( and before leaving the polling place( the board of election inspectors shall issue a certificate of votes upon re$uest of the duly accredited "atchers% The certificate shall contain the number of votes obtained by each candidate "ritten in "ords and figures( the number of the precinct( the name of the city or municipality and province( the total

number of voters "ho voted in the precinct and the date and time issued( and shall be signed and thumbmar!ed by each member of the board% +ection 11. Certificate of 5otes as E3i6ence. - The provisions of Sections >82 and >8. of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' not"ithstanding( the certificate of votes shall be admissible in evidence to prove tampering( alteration( falsification or any anomaly committed in the election returns concerned( "hen duly authenticated by testimonial or documentary evidence presented to the board of canvassers by at least t"o members of the board of election inspectors "ho issued the certificate: Provided( That failure to present any certificate of votes shall be a bar to the presentation of other evidence to impugn the authenticity of the election returns% +ection 1!. "ransfer of Counting of 5otes to +afer Place. - 3f on account on imminent danger of violence( terrorism( disorder or similar causes it becomes necessary to transfer the counting of votes to a safer place( the board of inspectors may effect such transfer by unanimous approval by the board and concurrence by the ma:ority of the "atchers present% This fact shall be recorded in the minutes of voting and the members of the board and the "atchers shall manifest their approval or concurrence by affi,ing their signatures therein% The Commission shall issue rules and guidelines on the matter to secure the safety of the members of the board( the "atchers( and all the election documents and paraphernalia% +ection 1 . Nu/ber of Copies of Election Returns an6 their %istribution. - The election returns re$uired under Section >'> of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' shall be prepared in se,tuplicate% The first copy shall be delivered to the city or municipal board of canvassers as a boy for its use in the city or municipal canvass% The second copy shall be delivered to the election registrar of the city or municipality for transmittal to the provincial board of canvassers for its use in the provincial canvass% The third copy shall li!e"ise be delivered to the election registrar for transmittal to the Commission% The fourth copy(

to be !no"n as advance election returns( shall be delivered to the city or municipal treasurer "ho( in the pre-large to enable the public to read them( builti+ed representative( shall immediately and publicly open the same and post the votes therein in an election board( sufficiently large to enable to public to read them( built on a public place preferably "ithin the immediate vicinity of the city hall of municipal building% The fifth copy shall be deposited in the compartment of the ballot bo, for valid ballots% The si,th copy shall be delivered to the city or municipal trial :udge or municipal circuit trial :udge( as the case may be( or in his absence to any official "ho may be designated by the Commission for safe!eeping% Said copy maybe opened during the canvass upon order of the board of canvassers for purposes of comparison "ith other copies of the returns "hose authenticity is in $uestion% The city or municipal treasurer shall issue certified copy of any election returns in his possession upon re$uest of any interested party and payment of the fees re$uired by e,isting ordinances% The Commission shall promulgate rules for the speedy and safe delivery or preservation of the election returns% +ection 2:. 9oar6s of Can3assers. - There shall be a board of canvassers for each province( city and municipality as follo"s: -a0 Provincial Board of Canvassers% - The provincial board of canvassers shall be composed of the provincial election supervisor or a la"yer in the regional office of the Commission( as chairman( the provincial fiscal( as vice-chairman( and the provincial superintendent of schools( as member% -b0 City Board of Canvassers% - The city board of canvassers shall be composed of the city election registrar or a la"yer of the Commission( as chairman( the city fiscal( as vice-chairman( and the city superintendent of schools( as member% 3n cities "ith more than one election registrar( the Commission shall designate the election registrar "ho shall act as chairman%

-c0 Municipal Board of Canvassers% - The municipal board of canvassers shall be composed of the election registrar or a representative of the Commission( as chairman( the municipal treasurer( as vice-chairman( and the most senior district school supervisor or in his absence a principal of the school district or the elementary school( as member% The proceedings of the board of canvassers shall be open and public% +ection 21. +ubstitution of Chair/an an6 *e/bers of the 9oar6 of Can3assers. - 3n case of non-availability( absence( dis$ualification due to relationship( or incapacity for any cause of the chairman( the Commission shall appoint as substitute a ran!ing la"yer of the Commission% 4ith respect to the other members of the board( the Commission shall appoint as substitute the follo"ing in the order named: The Provincial uditor( the Registrar of Aeeds( the Cler! of Court nominated by the *,ecutive Budge of the Regional Trial Court( and any other available appointive provincial official in the case of the provincial board of canvassers@ the officials in the city corresponding to those enumerated( in the case of the city board of canvassers@ and the Municipal dministrator( the Municipal ssessor( the Cler! of Court nominated by the *,ecutive Budge of the Municipal Trial Court( or any other available appointive municipal officials( in the case of the municipal board of canvassers% +ection 22. Can3assing Co//ittees. - The board of canvasser may constitute such number of canvassing committees as may be necessary to enable the board of complete the canvass "ithin the period prescribed under Section >8' of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&': Provided( That each committee shall be composed of three members( each member to be designated by the chairman and members of the board and that all candidates shall be notified in "riting( before the election( of the number of committees to be constituted so that they can designate their "atchers in each committee% The committees shall be under the direct supervision and control of the board%

+ection 24. Notice of *eetings of the 9oar6. - t least five -20 days before the initial meeting of the board of canvassers( the chairman of the board shall give "ritten notice to all members thereof and to each candidate and political party presenting candidates for election in the political subdivision concerned of the date( time and place of the meeting% Similar notice shall also be given for subse$uent meetings unless notice has been given in open session of the board% Proof of service of notice to each member( candidate and political party shall be attached to and shall form part of the records of the proceedings% 3f notice is given in open session( such fact shall be recorded in the minutes of the proceedings% +ection 24. Procee6ings of the 9oar6. - The board of canvassers shall have full authority to !eep order "ithin the canvassing room or hall( and its premises and enforce obedience to its la"ful orders% 3f any person shall refuse to obey any la"ful order of the board or shall so conduct himself in such disorderly manner as to disturb or interrupt its proceedings( the board may order any peace officer to ta!e such person in custody until the ad:ournment of the meeting% +ection 25. Right to be Present an6 to Counsel %uring the Can3ass. - ny registered political party( coalition of parties( through their representatives( and any candidate has the right to be present and to counsel during the canvass of the election returns: Provided( That only one counsel may argue for each political party or candidate% They shall have the right to e,amine the returns being canvassed "ithout touching them( ma!e their observations thereon( and file their challenges in accordance "ith the rules and regulations of the Commission% #o dilatory action shall allo"ed by the board of canvassers% +ection 26. C$*E(EC ,earings an6 Procee6ings. - 3n all hearings( in$uiries( and proceedings of the Commission( including preliminary investigations of election offenses( no person subpoenaed to testify as a "itness shall be e,cused from attending and testifying or from producing boo!s( papers( correspondence( memoranda and

other records on the ground that the testimony or evidence( documentary or other"ise( re$uired of him( may tend to incriminate him or sub:ect him to prosecution: Provided( That no person shall be prosecuted criminally for or on account of any matter concerning "hich he is compelled( after having claimed the privilege against selfincrimination( to testify and produce evidence( documentary or other"ise% Cnder such terms and conditions as it may determine( the Commission may grant immunity from criminal prosecution to any person "hose testimony or "hose possession and production of documents or other evidence may be necessary to determine the truth in any hearing( in$uiry or proceeding being conducted by the Commission or under its authority( in the performance or in the furtherance of its constitutional functions and statutory ob:ectives% The immunity granted under this and the immediately preceding paragraph shall not e,empt the "itness from criminal prosecution for per:ury or false testimony% +ection 21. Election $ffenses. - 3n addition to the prohibited acts and election offenses enumerated in Sections >.' and >.> of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( as amended( the follo"ing shall be guilty of an election offense: -a0 ny person "ho causes the printing of official ballots and election returns by any printing establishment "hich is not under contract "ith the Commission on *lections and any printing establishment "hich underta!es such unauthori+ed printing% -b0 ny member of the board of election inspector or board of canvassers "ho tampers( increases( or decreases the votes received by a candidate in any election or any member of the board( "ho refuses( after proper verification and hearing( to credit the correct votes or deduct such tampered votes%

-c0 ny member of the board of election inspectors "ho refuses to issue to duly accredited "atchers the certificate of votes provided in Section '. hereof% -d0 ny person "ho violates Section '' hereof regarding prohibited forms of election propaganda% -e0 ny chairman of the board of canvassers "ho fails to give notice of meeting to other members of board( candidate or political party as re$uired under Section >8 hereof% -f0 ny person declared as nuisance candidate as defined under Section .6 of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'( or is other"ise dis$ualified( by final and e,ecutory :udgment( "ho continue to misrepresent himself( or holds himself out( as a candidate( such as by continuing to campaign thereafter( and<or other public officer or private individual( "ho !no"ingly induces or abets such misrepresentation( by commission or omission( shall be guilty of an election offense and sub:ect to the penalty provided in Section >.? of the same Code% +ection 2!. Prosecution of 5ote=buying an6 5ote=selling. - The presentation of a complaint for violations of paragraph -a0 or -b0 of Section >.' of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' supported by affidavits of complaining "itnesses attesting to the offer or promise by or of the voter=s acceptance of money or other consideration from the relatives( leaders or sympathi+ers of a candidate( shall be sufficient basis for an investigation to be immediately conducted by the Commission( directly or through its duly authori+ed legal officers( under Section .& or Section >.2 of said Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'% Proof that at least one voter in different precincts representing at least t"enty percent ->/;0 of the total precincts in any municipality( city or province has been offered( promised or given money( valuable consideration or other e,penditure by a candidate=s relatives( leaders and<or sympathi+ers for the purpose of promoting the election of such

candidate( shall constitute a disputable presumption of a conspiracy under paragraph -b0 of Section >.' of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&'% 4here such proof affect at least t"enty percent ->/;0 of the precincts of the municipality( city or province to "hich the public office aspired by the favored candidate relates( the same shall constitute a disputable presumption of the involvement of such candidate and of his principal campaign managers in each of the municipalities concerned( in the conspiracy% The giver( offerer( and promisor as "ell as the solicitor( acceptor( recipient and conspirator referred to in paragraphs -a0 and -b0 of Section >.' of Batas Pambansa Blg% &&' shall be liable as principals: Provided( That any persons( other"ise guilty under said paragraphs "ho voluntarily gives information and "illingly testifies on any violation thereof in any official investigation or proceeding shall be e,empt from prosecution and punishment for the offenses "ith reference to "hich his information and testimony "ere given: Provided( further( That nothing herein shall e,empt such person from criminal prosecution for per:ury or false testimony% +ection 2 . %esignation of $ther %ates for certain Pre= election Acts. - 3f it should no longer be reasonably possible to observe the periods and dates prescribed by la" for certain preelection acts( the Commission shall fi, other periods and dates in order to ensure accomplishment of the activities so voters shall not be deprived of their right of suffrage% +ection 4:. Effecti3ity of Regulations an6 $r6ers of the Co//ission. - The rules and regulations promulgated by the Commission shall ta!e effect on the seventh day after their publication in the )fficial 9a+ette or in at least t"o ->0 daily ne"spapers of general circulation in the Philippines% )rders and directives issued by the Commission shall be furnished by personal delivery to all parties concerned "ithin forty-eight -?&0 hours from date of issuance and shall ta!e effect immediately upon receipt

thereof unless a later date is e,pressly specified in such orders or directives% +ection 41. Repealing Clause. - ll la"s( e,ecutive orders( rules and regulations( or any part thereof inconsistent here"ith are deemed repealed or modified accordingly% +ection 42. +eparability Clause. - 3f for any reason( any section or provision of this act or any part thereof( or the application if such section( provision or portion is declared invalid or unconstitutional( the remainder thereof shall not be affected by such declaration% +ection 44. Effecti3ity. - This approval% pproved: January 5, 1 !! ct shall ta!e effect upon its