COC filing period for 2019 polls ends

Published October 17, 2018, 6:00 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Betheena Unite

The filing of certificates of candidacy (COC) for the 2019 midterm elections came to a close Wednesday afternoon.

Bacoor, Cavite Mayor Lani Mercado Revilla, accompanied by a throng of supporters, showed up at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) main office in Intramuros, Manila to file the COC of her husband, detained former Sen. Ramon ‘Bong’ Revilla, Jr., who will seek a Senate seat anew.

Juan Ponce Enrile, Harry Roque, and Lani Mercado during the last day of COC filing (MANILA BULLETIN)
Juan Ponce Enrile, Harry Roque, and Lani Mercado Revilla during the last day of COC filing at the Commission on Elections main office in Intramuros, Manila (MANILA BULLETIN)

Broadcast journalist Jiggy Manicad also filed his COC for senator as an independent candidate.

Senator Juan Edgardo Angara and his entourage also marched to the Comelec main office. Angara will seek re-election.

The last day of filing COCs was starting to be eventful when different personalities, mostly known due to their previous positions in the government, were already arriving.

Presidential Adviser Francis Tolentino, former Solicitor General Florin “Pilo” Hilbay, veteran election lawyer Romulo Macalintal, former interior and local government secretary Raffy Alunan, former Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, former Senator Osmena III, and former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile were among the Senate hopefuls who chose to file their certificate of candidacies on the last day of filing.

Enrile, who earlier announced his Senate comeback bid Tuesday, made a surprise appearance at around 11 a.m. to correct an error in his COC.

From his car, he walked casually up to the gate of the Comelec office amid cheers and jeers.

He refused to grant interviews.

Nominees of various party-list groups also arrived before noon, including Bro. Eddie Villanueva, first nominee of Citizen’s Battle Against Corruption; former Manila Mayor Lito Atienza (Buhay party-list nominee), Leyte Rep. Yedda Romualdez filed for Tingog Sinirangan party-list first nominee.

The Comelec closed the five-day period of COC filing at exactly 5 p.m. with 152 filers for senator.

The number is lower to the 172 who filed for the said post in 2016.

For the party-list polls, the number of those who filed their Certificates of Nomination and Acceptance totaled 185 as opposed to the 213 in 2016.

Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said the number was lower because 2019 will be midterm polls.

“Usually midterm elections less candidates historically,” she said in a press briefing.

Compared to the atmosphere in the last elections, Guanzon said the filing this year was not “circus-like”. (with reports from Leslie Ann Aquino)