THE UST Central Student Council (CSC) and college student councils urged Thomasians not to settle for the “lesser evil” in the 2022 elections, and instead “unite for the common good.”

In a statement on Nov. 15, student leaders listed the types of candidates to be avoided, stopping short of naming names.

Thomasians, they said, should not vote for the following: 

  • a thief;
  • a fraud who had faked school documents;
  • a homophobic preacher;
  • a political turncoat;
  • a coward;
  • a corrupt person;
  • a traitor to the country;
  • a puppet of the Duterte administration;
  • a servant of an imperialist country;
  • a tax evader; and
  • an anti-poor candidate.

The CSC said voting for these candidates would go against the three core values of Thomasians — compassion, commitment, and competence.

In the same statement, UST student leaders urged Congress to impose stricter rules on the substitution of candidates, which, they said, were being used for “selfish political strategies” and in bastardizing the Philippine electoral process.

“We call on the patriotic, mass-oriented legislators in Congress to amend the current Omnibus Election Code, specifically the bounds of substitution, and on the Commission on Elections to faithfully promulgate and implement its rules and regulations for free, fair and honest elections as to never allow this mockery of Philippine democracy and constitution to ever happen again,” the statement read.

Under Article 9, Section 77 of the Omnibus Election Code, substitutions are allowed in case “an official candidate of a registered or accredited political party dies, withdraws or is disqualified.” 

The candidate can be replaced by another before a deadline, provided that the replacement belongs to the same political party as the one being substituted.

While the CSC acknowledged that politicians have the right to change their minds, it said running for public office requires decisiveness.

“Running for public service is not for the faint-hearted and undecided. It is a duty, mission and commitment that aspirants should embody with respect and honor. As the lives and welfare of the Filipino people for the next years are at stake, it is definitely not a game of cards full of deceit and trickery,” it said.

The statement was signed by the presidents of the CSC and college-based student councils. Christine Joyce A. Paras


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