May 19, 2024

Councilor Fred Bagbagen has proposed an ordinance seeking to ban politicians and private individuals from putting up posters, signages, images, or pictures on public and private properties, and vehicles.

The proposed ordinance also aims to prohibit actions such as affixing names through inscription, painting, engraving, sculpting, or superimposing names, and symbols.

The proposed measure, once approved, will penalize erring public officials by a fine of P5,000 and a one month suspension or imprisonment not exceeding 30 days at the discretion of a court. Private individuals who violate the ordinance will be fined P3,000 or face imprisonment for up to 30 days, also at the discretion of a court.

According to Bagbagen, enterprising individuals, especially before elections, had put up posters, signages, images or pictures on public and private properties and vehicles using flimsy excuses, such as greetings on occasions or events, or even advising motorists to drive carefully or any other self-promoting greetings just to advertise their names.

These self-promoting materials litter the public and private spaces which cause pollution to the atmosphere and are also considered as public nuisance to the detriment of the community and the public, Bagbagen said.

“These practices are very deceptive if not unethical which need to be stopped in order that no unwarranted advances shall be made by these individuals,” Bagbagen stated.

The current proposed ordinance bears similarities to an existing city law, which Bagbagen himself co-authored with former Vice Mayor Daniel Farinas. 

Enacted in 2012 as Ordinance 33-2012, the existing ordinance prohibits politicians, public officials, and private individuals from attaching their names through various means such as inscriptions, paintings, engravings, sculptures, or overlays using materials like paint, metal, plastic, wood, or cement on public projects funded by public funds. These projects include buildings, roads, bridges, overpasses, gymnasiums, classrooms, waiting sheds, terminals, and markets.

The penalties under the proposed ordinance and the existing one are also similar. 

Also, just recently, the city council passed a resolution requesting concerned agencies and offices to remove unauthorized campaign materials placed by individuals in violation of existing local and national laws. – Jordan G. Habbiling