A non-profit watchdog group for chemical safety and zero waste asked political aspirants to exercise environmental stewardship as the election season heats up.
The EcoWaste Coalition made the plea on behalf of Mother Earth as candidates for all elective positions in the 2016 polls prepare to file their certificates of candidacy (COCs) on October 12-16.
“We appeal to all candidates for the May 2016 polls not to pay lip service to environmental protection to woo voters. Candidates often say ‘I will serve the people and protect the environment,’ but fail to match words with deeds,” said Aileen Lucero, Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition.
“In the period leading up to the elections, we ask all candidates and their backers regardless of their political colors to show authentic concern for Mother Earth by campaigning in a responsible manner that will cause no harm to public health and the environment,” she said.
“From the filing of their COCs to the designated campaign period, we urge candidates to be mindful of what they do to prevent and reduce the wasting of resources and the dirtying of the surroundings. Please refrain from being a ‘garpol’,” she emphasized.
The EcoWaste coined the term "garpol," a wordplay of "garbage" and "politician," to describe a wasteful politico who does not mind throwing away resources and generating loads of trash as long as he or she gets the votes of the electorate.
The filing of COCs, for example, should be done in a simple way sans extravagant gimmicks, motorcades and wasteful use of propaganda materials that will only add to garbage, pollution and traffic woes, the EcoWaste Coalition suggested.
As the official campaign period has yet to commence, the EcoWaste Coalition urged candidates to shun premature campaigning out of delicadeza.
“Premature campaigning such as the tarps with the faces and names of politicos nailed on trees leaves a bad taste to the mouth,” Lucero said.
As per Comelec Resolution 9981, the campaign period for the presidential, vice-presidential and senatorial candidates and party-list groups will begin on February 9 to May 7, 2016, while the campaign period for congressional and other local elective positions will start on March 25 to May 7, 2016.
As in previous elections, the EcoWaste Coalition will actively promote waste prevention and reduction before, during and after the campaign period, and call attention to practices that pose hazard to human health and the environment.