Comelec OKs 4 new party-list groups, disqualifies 4 othersBy Tina G. Santos
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Friday allowed four new party-list groups to run in the May 2013 polls, but disqualified four others.
The new party-list groups accredited by the Comelec were 1-Abilidad, Inc.; Ating Guro (AG); Sanlakas; and Anti-War/Anti-Terror Mindanano Peace Movement (Awat Mindanao).
This brings to 83 the total number of party-list groups now allowed to run in next year’s elections.
The Comelec, however, denied the accreditation of four new party-list applicants. Disqualified were Isang Kasambahay Po Asso. Inc. (1-Kasambahay Po); Aasenso Sa Barangay (Asbi-Lakan); Ang Alyansa Laban Sa Pang-Aapi Sa May Kapansanan At Pang-Aabuso Sa Likas Na Yaman (Alay-Akay); and Urban Poor Development And Services (UPDS).
Total of 182 disqualified
There are now 182 party-list groups disqualified by the Comelec, 55 of which have been cancelled of their accreditation while 127 were denied registration.
Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes advised congressmen of disqualified party-list groups that instead of conducting a legislative inquiry, they should just wait for the ruling of the Supreme Court (SC) on their fate in next year’s elections.
“They should realize that they are already at the Supreme Court, so why still investigate? So they can say that we were wrong? But what if we are sustained by the SC, then they will be the ones embarrassed. But if they win, what is left for them to gripe about? Then we will admit we were wrong,” said Brillantes.
He insisted that the Comelec had the mandate to approve or disqualify all party-list groups—whether those with existing accreditations or new applicants—who want to participate in the elections.
“If they continue with the investigation, we will face them and say they are always subjected to questioning by the Comelec every time they apply,” he stressed.
Rep. Agapito Guanlao of the disqualified Butil party-list had already said he would seek a congressional probe of Comelec’s ongoing purge of party-list groups for the 2013 polls.