On the heels of a liquor ban and a money ban, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has now issued a ban on cellphone text messages and the loading of prepaid credit.
From May 9 to 13, Philippine citizens shall not be allowed to send SMS texts and buy prepaid load. Comelec has also directed telecoms companies to suspend all unlimited texting promos, such as Globe’s “Unlitext” and Smart’s “All Text.”
“This prevents candidates from sending spam messages and text blasts which have been bombarding people for weeks,” says Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes, Jr. “Everyday, for example, I receive a text from Jack Enrile, asking me to vote for him. I just want Jack Enrile to stop texting me.”
“We have also heard reports of a new vote-buying method, where candidates pay voters in prepaid load instead of cash,” Brillantes added. “We all know that the poor people, they cannot say no to load, so the load ban will put a stop to that.”
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez meanwhile urges the public to comply with the Commission’s new rules. “The gun ban, the liquor ban, the money ban, and now, the text and load ban, all of these are designed to create free and fair elections,” Jimenez says.
“The gun ban prevents violence, the liquor ban prevents drunkenness, the money ban prevents vote-buying… The only problem we have left to solve is people making dumb decisions. Next elections, we’ll impose an idiot ban. Anybody with an IQ below 80 will be disallowed from voting,” Jimenez declares. — Mosquito Press