for failing to file SOCE
The Commission on Elections in Negros Oriental has warned that winners in the recently-concluded Barangay & Sangguniang Kabataan Elections will be removed from office, perpetually disqualified from running in future elections, and barred from holding any appointive position in government if they twice fail to file their Statement of Contributions & Expenditures (SOCE).
Lawyer Eliseo Labaria, acting provincial election supervisor, said that only 15,268 or 79.15 percent of the total 19,289 candidates in the recent BSKE had filed their SOCEs.
Filing the SOCE is one of the requirements for a winning candidate to assume office.
Labaria said they expect the numbers to increase once the different towns and cities submitted their respective reports by Nov. 30.
The Comelec had earlier ruled out an extension of the Nov. 29 deadline for the filing of SOCE, saying that “under the law, all candidates must submit their SOCE within 30 days from election day.”
Comelec Chairman George Erwin Garcia told reporters in Manila that the Comelec collected P80 million in administrative fines from candidates who failed to file their SOCE in the 2022 elections.
The legal basis for requiring candidates and political parties to submit “full, true and itemized” SOCEs is Section 14 of Republic Act 7166 or the “Synchronized National and Local Elections Law.”
It provides that all candidates and treasurers of political parties are required to file their SOCEs.
Winning candidates who overspent during the campaign period may also be removed from office even if they have already assumed office. (with a report from Judy F. Partlow/ PNA)