RESOLUTION No. 8739
GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE BOARD OF ELECTION INSPECTORS (BEI)
ON THE VOTING, COUNTING, AND TRANSMISSION OF RESULTS
IN CONNECTION WITH THE 10 MAY 2010, NATIONAL AND LOCAL ELECTIONS.
Promulgation: 29 December 2009
SEC. 15. Official watchers of candidates, political parties and other groups. - Each candidate and registered political party or coalition of political parties duly registered with the Commission and fielding candidates in the election, as well as duly accredited citizens' arms may appoint two watchers, to serve alternately, in every polling place. However, candidates for Senator, candidates for Member, Sangguniang Panlalawigan or Sangguniang Panlungsod, or Sangguniang Bayan, belonging to the same ticket or slate, shall collectively be entitled to one watcher.
Duly accredited citizens arms of the Commission shall be entitled to appoint a watcher in every polling place. Other civil, professional, business, service, youth, and any other similar organizations, with prior authority of the Commission, shall be entitled collectively to appoint one watcher in every polling place.
If, because of limited space, all watchers cannot be accommodated in the polling place, preference shall be given to the watchers of the dominant majority and dominant minority parties as determined by the Commission and the watcher of the citizens' arm, with the latter being given preferential position closest to the BEI. In case there are two or more citizen's arm preference shall be given to the one authorized by the Commission to conduct an unofficial count.
SEC. 16. Qualifications of watchers. - No person shall be appointed watcher unless he:
a) Is a registered voter of the city or municipality comprising the precinct where he is assigned;
b) Is of good reputation;
c) Has not been convicted by final judgment of any election offense or of any other crime;
d) Knows how to read and write Pilipino, English or of the prevailing local dialect; and
e) Is not related within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity to the chairman or to any other member of the BEI in the polling place where he seeks appointment as watcher.
SEC. 17. Rights and duties of watchers. - Upon entering the polling place, the watchers shall deliver to the chairman their appointments as watchers, and their names shall forthwith be recorded in the Minutes with a notation under their signatures that they are not disqualified to serve as such under the immediately preceding Section. The appointments of the watchers shall bear the signature of the candidate or duly authorized representative of the party, organization or coalition that appointed them. For this purpose, at least fifteen (15) days before election day, independent candidates, registered parties, organizations, or coalitions authorized by the Coinmission to appoint watchers shall provide the Election Officers concerned with the names and signatures of their representatives authorized to appoint watchers in the city or municipality.
The watchers shall have the right to:
a) Witness and inform themselves of the proceedings of the BEI;
b) Take note of what they may see or hear;
c) Take photographs of the proceedings and incidents, if any, during the voting, counting of votes, as well as of the generated election returns and of the ballot boxes;
d) File a protest against any irregularity or violation of law which they believe may have been committed by the BEI or by any of its members or by any person;
e) Obtain from the BEI a certificate as to the filing of such protest and the resolution thereof; and
Watchers shall not speak to any member of the BEI, or to any voter or among themselves, in such a manner as would disturb the proceedings of the BEI.
The watchers representing the dominant majority and dominant minority parties fielding candidates and the watcher of the citizen's arm shall, if available, affix their signatures and thumbmarks in the election returns.