Escudero ‘confident’ law is on their side in Poe’s DQ cases
Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero on Tuesday said only the Supreme Court can decide with finality on the disqualification cases against his running mate Senator Grace Poe over legal questions on her citizenship and residency, noting that he is confident that the law is on their side.
This was after the Commission on Election’s (Comelec) 1st division ruled to disqualify Poe from the presidential derby, just weeks after the poll body’s 2nd division issued a similar decision.
“Though the two Comelec divisions decided to disqualify Sen. Grace, at the end of the day it’s only the Supreme Court who can disqualify a candidate with finality. We are hopeful that if Senator Grace cannot achieve justice from the Comelec, she will finally achieve justice in the Supreme Court,” Escudero said in a statement.
In a 2-1 vote, the Comelec’s 1st division on Tuesday voted to cancel Poe’s certificate of candidacy in favor of the petitions filed by former University of the East College of Law dean Amado Valdez, former senator Francisco “Kit” Tatad, and De La Salle University political science professor Antonio Conteras.
Poe’s camp said they will file a motion for reconsideration before the poll body next week. But Escudero said their “only recourse” is to seek relief from the high court should the Comelec en banc uphold the previous rulings.
Citing previous SC rulings in election-related cases that may serve as precedents in Poe’s cases, Escudero said “we are confident that the law is on our side.”
“Under the law, adoptive children take over the rights and the pertinences of a legitimate child. So if you are a legitimate child of a natural-born father, then the status of your citizenship is also natural-born,” Escudero said, citing the case of Poe’s adoptive father Fernando Poe Jr., who was declared natural-born Filipino by the SC in a 2004 ruling.
“The Supreme Court also said in that case and I quote, ‘We cannot leave the unelected members of these Court the power and to decide who is the next president will be. That decision is best left to the sovereign Filipino people,’” he added.
Escudero said the “fair” high tribunal would not allow a presidential aspirant to win by default, alluding to administration bet Mar Roxas. IDL
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.