Is there an 11th 'presidentiable'?

By Reynaldo Santos Jr., Newsbreak

Posted at Feb 20 2010 09:09 PM | Updated as of Feb 21 2010 08:24 AM

Felix Cantal comes out with ads, may be charged for misrepresentation

MANILA, Philippines - Some buses plying EDSA carry at their rear a campaign advertisement of a presidential aspirant who, strangely, is not an official candidate. He has, in fact, been declared a nuisance candidate by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) long before the campaign started.

So what does one do with those "Peck Cantal for President" transit ads by Felix Cantal?

"It doesn't look like an offense," Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez told Newsbreak, adding that there are no provisions in the Omnibus Election Code that prevent non-candidates from coming out with campaign advertisements.

However, he said, concerned citizens can file a complaint with the Comelec to sort of force the poll body to come up with a position and guidelines on the matter.

Election lawyer Sixto Brillantes said that despite the silence of the election law, the act still constitutes "a misrepresentation," which can be classified as a criminal offense.

Brillantes explained that a non-candidate promoting his supposed candidacy through advertisement can be charged with estafa.

The lawyer said that the owner of the space where the misleading advertisement is placed could be made liable, too. He said that the official list of candidates is well-publized, and it's not an excuse not to know about it. (Newsbreak)