Comelec asked to stand by its disqualification of certain partylistsBy Philip C. Tubeza
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The election watchdog Kontra Daya has asked the Commission on Elections to uphold the disqualification of 38 party-list groups it had earlier barred from running in the upcoming mid-term elections.
In a 15-page motion, Kontra Daya said the Comelec should disqualify these 38 party-list groups even after the Supreme Court issued new guidelines which allowed non-marginalized groups to join the party-list race.
“Definitely, public opinion is against the Supreme Court decision with respect to its decision (issuing the new guidelines),” Kontra Daya said.
“The Comelec decision cleansing the party-list system was a good start and was popularly supported by the public,” it added.
Kontra Daya said the 38 party-list groups should remain disqualified “without the need for the Comelec to conduct a summary evidentiary hearing” because they allegedly failed to meet other criteria, including the requirement that they have a track record in the sectors that they claim to represent.
The 38 party-list groups included AKO Bicol Political Party (AKB), Association for Righteousness Advocacy on Leadership (ARAL), Alliance for Rural Concerns (ARC), Association of Philippine Electric Cooperatives(APEC),
1st Consumers Alliance for Rural Energy, Inc. (1-CARE), Aksyon Magsasaka-Partido Tinig ng Masa (AKMA-PTM), and the Kapatiran ng mga Nakulong na Walang Sala, Inc. (KAKUSA), The Alliance for Rural and Agrarian Reconstruction,Inc. (ARARO),
Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy(ANAD), Agapay ng Indigenous Peoples Rights Alliance,Inc. (A-IPRA), 1-Bro Philippine Guardians Brotherhood, Inc.(1BRO-PGBI), The True Marcos Loyalist (for God, Country and People) Association of the Philippines, Inc.(BANTAY),
Agri-Agra na Reporma Para sa Magsasaka ng Pilipinas Movement (AGRI), The Philippine Coconut Producers Federation, Inc. (COCOFED), Action Brotherhood for Active Dreamer, Inc. (ABROAD), 1 Guardians Nationalist Philippines, Inc. (1GANAP/GUARDIANS),
Atong Paglaum, Inc. (Atong Paglaum), United Movement Against Drugs Foundation (UNIMAD), Blessed Federation of Farmers and Fishermen International, Inc. (A BLESSED Party-List), Aangat Tayo Party-List Party (AT), The Kaagapay ng Nagkakaisang Agilang Pilipinong Magsasaka (KAP), Adhikain at Kilusan ng Ordinaryong Tao Para sa Lupa, Pabahay, Hanapbuhay at Kaunlaran (AKO-BAHAY),
Abang Lingkod Party-List (ABANG LINGKOD), Firm 24-K Association, Inc. (FIRM 24-K), Alliance of Bicolnon Party (ABP), Green Force for the Environment Sons and Daughters of Mother Earth (GREENFORCE), The Ang Agrikultura Natin Isulong (AANI),
Bayani Party List (BAYANI), Action League of Indigenous Masses (ALIM), Alliance of Advocates in Mining Advancement for National Progress (AAMA), Social Movement for Active Reform and Transparency (SMART), Butil Farmers Party (BUTIL), The Ang Galing Pinoy (AG), Binhi-Partido ng mga Magsasaka Para sa mga Magsasaka (BINHI),
1st Kabalikat ng Bayan Ginhawang Sangkatauhan (1st KABAGIS), 1-United Transport Koalisyon (1-UTAK), Coalition of Senior Citizens in the Philippines, Inc. (SENIOR CITIZENS), and Pasang Masda Nationwide Party (PASANG MASDA).
“With respect to ANAD, it must be noted that the disqualification is not only based on its failure to represent any marginalized or underrepresented sector but also due to its failure to submit its Statement of Contribution and Expenditures for the 2007 Elections, which is a violation of the election law,” Kontra Daya said.
“Thus, ANAD should remain to be disqualified to participate in the May 2013 election without the need for the Comelec to still conduct a summary evidentiary hearing for said purpose,” it added.
Kontra Daya noted that the Supreme Court had acknowledged that the Comelec did not commit grave abuse of discretion in its factual findings during the summary evidentiary hearings that it conducted to determine the qualification of these party-list groups.
“Thus, said factual findings remain to be valid and applicable in disqualifying the above-enumerated party-list groups, even without conducting another summary evidentiary hearing,” the group said.