Show us the fixers in sale of party-list slots—ComelecBy Philip C. Tubeza
Philippine Daily Inquirer
A Commission on Elections (Comelec) official on Monday challenged the poll body’s critics to substantiate their claims that “fixers” in the poll body were demanding money from party-list groups seeking accreditation to be able to run in next year’s polls.
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez urged the critics to provide evidence that fixers were asking for millions of pesos in exchange for approving or facilitating the accreditation of party-list groups.
“The Comelec has always invited people who make such allegations to come forward and substantiate,” Jimenez said.
Bayan Muna party-list Representatives Neri Colmenares and Teodoro Casiño have filed a resolution in Congress calling for an investigation into reports that party-list accreditations were being sold to the highest bidder by “fixers” at the Comelec.
Jimenez said the problem was that the “con artists” claim that they can have party-list groups accredited in exchange for money when they don’t really have any influence in the agency.
“Remember, the issue is not our approval process. The problem is people pretending to have an inside track and other people wanting to buy their way into the party-list system,” he said.
Jimenez said the Comelec was prepared for a congressional investigation into the matter.
Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. earlier said the commission was open to an inquiry after several congressmen exposed a so-called “party-list accreditation for sale” scam.
“As I told our congressmen, we also want to know if such a thing is happening in the Comelec. We are definitely ready to cooperate,” Brillantes said.