“Investigation into the use of the emergency alert system to campaign beyond the jurisdiction of Comelec”

The Election Commission (Comelec) said investigating the use of the mobile emergency alert system for campaign purposes is already beyond its purview.

In a brief statement, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez explained that using emergency channels to campaign is not penalized by electoral law.

But, he noted that such action could have violated other government guidelines.

“The criminal liability of those behind this decision will have to be determined by the appropriate government agencies,” Jimenez said.

The electoral body released the clarification after reports on how the National Council for Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (NDDRMC) emergency alert was used to promote a certain candidate.

This emergency warning was reportedly sent to some people who did not identify a specific candidate but instead used the acronym BBM.

Among the aspiring candidates for the 2022 polls is Ferdinand “BongBong” Marcos, Jr. who is credited with the acronym BBM by supporters and the public.

The NDRRMC has denied issuing the controversial and spurious emergency warning. He noted that such notification is only for “rain warnings due to current weather disturbances”.

Deputy parliamentary minority leader and representative of Bayan Muna, Carlos Isagani Zarate, called for an investigation into the “hijacking” incident, which he said violated government protocols.

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) announced last Wednesday that it was already investigating the matter.

Thelma J. Longworth

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