The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has declared violations of Covid-19 health and safety protocols during campaign activities as election offenses.

Under Resolution No. 10730, the Comelec said it would be unlawful for any candidate, party, or any person to “act in a manner that violates the minimum health and safety protocols.”

Health and safety protocols listed by the Comelec under the resolution were:

1. wearing of face mask and face shield;
2. one-meter physical distancing;
3. frequent disinfection of hands; and
4. proper cough and sneezing etiquette

The Comelec also required the submission of affidavits of compliance with health protocols.

“Within 24 hours after the conclusion of any in-person campaign activity, the campaign organizing staff shall submit a notarized affidavit od compliance with health protocols to the Comelec with territorial jurisdiction over the place where the in-person campaign activity was conducted,” the Comelec said.

Failure to submit such affidavit will be considered non-cooperation, which the Comelec said was punishable under the Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act.

The campaign period for president, vice president, senator and party-list groups is from Feb. 8 to May 7, excluding Apr. 14 and 15, which is the two-day Holy Week break. John Ezekiel J. Hirro