February 19, 2019 12:20 PM    Jun Patrick V. Balita
“No officer or employee in the civil service, as well as any member of the military, shall engage, directly or indirectly, in any electioneering or partisan political activity, except to vote.” This reminder was issued by Civil Service Commission (CSC) Chairperson Alicia dela Rosa-Bala in line with preparations for the May 13 national and local elections.
As stated in Section 261 (i) of the Omnibus Election Code (Intervention of Public Officers and Employees), “Any office or employee in the civil service, except those holding political offices; any officer, employee, or member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, or any police force, special forces, home defense forces, barangay self-defense units and all other para-military units that now exist or which may hereafter be organized who, directly or indirectly, intervenes in any election campaign or engages in any partisan political activity, except to vote or to preserve public order, if one is a peace officer, shall be guilty of an election offense.”
An advisory on Electioneering and Partisan Political Activity issued through CSC Resolution No. 1600298 dated 29 March 2016 reiterates that the prohibition aims to ensure that government workers will remain focused on the affairs of the government, do away with the spoils system, and shield public service from political influences.
The CSC however clarified that government workers may still express views on political matters. Section 124 of the Omnibus Rules on Appointments and Other Human Resource Actions states, “Nothing herein provided shall be understood to prevent any officer from expressing views on current political problems or issues, or from mentioning the name of candidates for public office whom he/she supports. Public officers and employees holding political offices may take part in political and electoral activities but it shall be unlawful for them to solicit contributions from their subordinates or subject them to any of the prohibited acts in the Omnibus Election Code.”
Click here to view CSC issuance regarding this matter.