The leadership of the House of Representatives is calling on all candidates in the May 2016 local and national elections to voluntary declare and observe a political ceasefire this Holy Week to properly mark this period of prayer and meditation.
Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said he hopes all forms of political mudslinging and black propaganda would stop this week, with candidates focusing instead on reviewing their platforms and reflecting on how they can best serve their fellow Filipinos.
"It is a time of prayer, meditation and looking inward which is the essence of the entire season. Let us focus therefore on the call for sacrifice, the practice of humility, compassion, repentance and forgiveness," Belmonte said.
Belmonte said candidates should ask themselves whether “their platforms adequately address the need for jobs, peace and security, educational opportunities, justice, and better infrastructures in our country.”
“If not, then they are not ready to lead the people," he said.
The Speaker called on candidates to strive to raise the standards of their campaigns by focusing on qualifications and their respective programs of governance rather than on carrying out demolition jobs against their opponents.
"With only two months left before the May 9 elections, it is time candidates reject a campaign defined by lies and demolition against their political opponents. There is no time to waste. We urge them to show selflessness and statesmanship now by highlighting their platforms and clearly expounding on the means to achieve these," the Speaker said.
"Instead of obsessing on the downfall or defeat of their political foes, candidates should think positively and kindly this Holy Week by focusing on how to adjust further their platforms for the betterment of the lives of Filipinos," said the Speaker, adding that, "We have a smart electorate who will not just believe nice pictures presented in front of empty promises. They deserve clear plans and the candidate stating exactly how he or she intends to achieve these promises they make."