The official ballots for the May 2022 national elections will contain 10 names of presidential candidates, 9 vice presidential bets, 24 senatorial candidates and 178 party-list groups, Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said Tuesday, January 18.
Jimenez confirmed that Partido Federal ng Pilipinas bet Ferdinand “Bong-Bong” Marcos Jr. whose candidacy is legally challenged is also on the ballot.
Jimenez said they already released the list of candidates to be included in the final ballot on Monday, January 17. He then added that a virtual walkthrough was held regarding the ballot printers on Tuesday, at the National Printing Office. The Comelec will start the printing of the official ballot tomorrow, January 20.
The Comelec, at the same time, is processing some final steps to host this year’s presidential debates , which would probably commence within this month, as advised by Jimenez.
“All of this is still in the planning stage but yes, in January there is probably gonna be a presidential debate,” Jimenez said.
He said that the main debates (presidential, vice-presidential and senatorial) would be spread throughout the campaign period – February, March and April.
On Tuesday, however, Jimenez clarified that political candidates for national positions are not required to attend the said debates.
“Under the law, participation in debates is not mandatory. Wala tayong choice. We cannot force them to join the debate,” Jimenez said.