MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) Friday said that it would no longer appeal the Supreme Court’s (SC) decision reinstating Imus, Cavite Mayor Emmanuel Maliksi which, in effect, reversed its decision declaring Homer Saquilayan as the winner.
“I don’t know what the lawyers of Saquilayan will do [but] as far as the Comelec is concerned, we can ask for a motion for reconsideration but we will no longer make any action,” Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. told reporters Friday.
The high tribunal had granted the motion for reconsideration of Maliksi on its dismissal of his election protest case against Saquilayan. The Supreme Court remanded the case to the Comelec and ordered a recount of the 2010 automated election ballots.
Previously, after the SC decided that Saquilayan was the duly-elected mayor, Comelec issued a writ of execution for Maliksi to turn over his post to Saquilayan.
Maliksi however did not recognize the writ of execution and barricaded himself within the mayor’s office refusing to let Saquilayan assume the post.
The writ of execution of Comelec has sin been withdrawn following the high court decision.
When asked what he thought of the high tribunal’s reversal, Brillantes said, “There is no clear cut decision” because of the close 8-7 vote of the justices. Associate Justice Jose Perez, who had voted in favor of Saquilayan, now favored Maliksi.
“Maybe the problem is with the SC, because of their flip-flopping, not with us because we have been pretty consistent,” Brillantes said.
“I’m not saying that we are right, but I am not saying we made a mistake, definitely not us,” he said.
The order of the Supreme Court to decrypt the ballots and do a recount would likely take 15 to 30 days which meant it would last up to the May 13, 2013 election day, Brillantes said.
“I think it should really be [left] to the people of Imus, since [Saquilayan and Maliksi] are the ones running [in the upcoming elections],” he said.
“Let the people of Imus decide it, we will still recount the ballots to comply with the process, but [the issue of who won in 2010] will become academic,” Brillantes added.