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Candidates are urged to keep campaign materials away from trees.

On Tuesday, political candidates were encouraged to avoid placing campaign materials on trees in order to safeguard them from harm.

As the campaign time began, Councilor Lydon Acap declared in a privilege speech during the Sangguniang Panlungsod’s virtual regular session that he is making this formal plea through a resolution.

In an interview, he stated, “Our main worry here is that our trees should not be posted with tarpaulins and other campaign materials of candidates.”

The resolution was addressed not just to candidates, but also to their political leaders, supporters, and all campaign participants.

“They should deploy them in locations based on Comelec (Commission on Elections) recommendations,” he said.

“The use of iron nails or gun tacker will only injure or destroy the health condition of the trees,” Acap reported Regional Director Livino Duran of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Western Visayas as saying in the resolution.

According to Duran, iron nails or tackers will pierce the protective bark of trees, allowing hazardous organisms to enter.

The cutting, destroying, or hurting of trees along public roadways, in parks, schools, and other public locations is prohibited by Section 3 of Republic Act 3571, according to Acap.

Damage or injury to naturally growing or planted trees is punishable under Section 3 of Presidential Decree No. 953, which imposes a fine of PHP500 but not more than PHP5,000 or a sentence of not less than six months but not more than two years in prison.

Furthermore, candidates who are seen putting their materials in restricted sites, such as trees, are subject to penalties under Section 264 of the Omnibus Election Code.

According to the councilor, the infringement could result in up to six years in prison, disqualification from holding public office, and the loss of their ability to vote.

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