Comelec asked to disqualify nominees of 49 party-list groups
By Shiela Crisostomo
The Philippine Star
MANILA, Philippines – Electoral reform group Kontra Daya has asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to disqualify the nominees of 49 party-list groups they claim have “questionable” agenda.
Comelec has accredited 175 part-list organizations to participate in the May 10 elections.
Renato Reyes of Kontra Daya noted that the nominees of the 49 party-list groups do not come from the marginalized sectors for which the party-list system was created.
They are mostly administration allies, incumbent officials, retired military and police officials, and individuals belonging to wealthy and politically influential families
Kontra Daya wants the nominees of these party-list groups disqualified motu propio, or without a petition for disqualification.
The group complained that the P5,000 disqualification fee charged by the Comelec discourages the filing of complaints against party-list groups that allegedly abuse the system.
“If the Comelec will not do anything despite the reports watchdog groups give them, it is up to the public then to be more discerning and vote only for those groups with a proven track record of serving the marginalized,” Reyes said. “ But if Comelec does not act now, what can arrest the steady destruction of the party-list system?”
On top of the group’s list of party-list nominees they want disqualified are Pampanga Rep. and presidential son Juan Miguel “Mikey”Arroyo, the first nominee of Ang Galing Pinoy which claims to represent security guards.
Another is former Energy Secretary Angelo Reyes of 1-Utak, which supposedly represents the transport sector.
The brother of National Security Adviser Chavit Singson, Jose Singson Jr., is the second nominee of 1st Kabagis party-list, which promises to “widen the segments of economic development.”
The Alyansa ng Media at Showbiz, which claims to represent media practitioners, has celebrity cosmetic surgeon Dr. Manny Calayan as its second nominee.
Anak Party-list, which claims to represent the urban poor, has listed former Police Senior Superintendent Eduardo Octviano, Jr. as its first nominee and retired police general Eliseo de la Paz as its second nominee. De la Paz had been tagged in the so-called “euro generals” scandal in 2008.