The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go is still a presidential aspirant in the May 2022 polls.
In an interview on Wednesday, Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez explained that Go has yet to formally withdraw his certificate of candidacy (COC).
“Unless he withdraws he will continue to be considered a candidate,” he said.
“He will become an official candidate when the campaign period starts and he has yet to withdraw,” added Jimenez.
The senator on Tuesday already announced his decision to withdraw from the presidential race.
Jimenez said Go’s name will still be in the official ballot if he doesn’t withdraw or isn’t disqualified.
The Comelec will start the printing of ballots in January next year.
In the event that Go withdraws later and his name was already included in the ballot, Jimenez said, votes for him will be considered stray.
“It will be counted for record purposes, but it won’t be included in the final tally,” he said.
Jimenez, meantime, reminded Go’s supporters who gathered outside the poll body’s office to observe the health protocols in view of the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“We would like to remind them to please maintain social distancing and observe health protocols. We don’t want them to get sick while they are doing that,” he said.
Jimenez said aspirants in the May 2022 polls may still withdraw their COCs until Election Day.