MANILA, Philippines—Senatorial hopeful Teddy Casiño on Wednesday took exception to a partial report released by the Commission on Elections placing him among the top five candidates with the longest airtime in television and radio advertisements.
“In all honesty, I am surprised by reports that say I am among the top five candidates who have the longest TV airtime, leaving the impression that I am a big TV ad spender. That is farthest from the truth,” he said in a statement.
At a political rally in Dumaguete City, he let out a loud laugh when asked to comment on the Comelec report. “That’s impossible. Maybe it’s a result of dagdag-bawas,” Casino told the Inquirer.
“The Comelec should check their figures and see how they computed them. There’s something wrong with their system. This is really impossible because from the start, one of the major problems of my campaign is that I lack funds for TV ads,” he added.
“The truth is I’m still one of the cash-strapped senatorial candidates,” he added.
In his statement, the three-term representative of the Bayan Muna party-list group said Comelec’s tally was “erroneous” because it only used network logs and did not actually monitor the ads.
Casiño, who is running under the Makabayan Coalition Party, released his ad spending report which showed he had spent only P3.77 million for 15.5 minutes of TV and radio ads. He added that while they had planned to run 33 spots, only 31 were aired.
He said the Comelec had applied a disproportionate method of counting TV airtime, putting at par the TV ads aired at the national and local levels. “It is like treating as equal in height a midget and a giant,” he said.
Casiño noted that a 30-second national ad on ABS-CBN simultaneously airing on 36 provincial TV stations was worth P538,592, while a 30-second local ad airing in only one of its provincial stations only cost P24,138 (4.5 percent of the cost of a national TV ad spot).
“We can only afford a few spots of national TV ads and we placed 12 minutes in ABS-CBN Davao and Cebu totalling P555,166, which is almost equivalent to a single 30-second ad in national television,” he said.
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