‘Nearly half of party-list groups not marginalized’
The bastardization of the party-list system has apparently continued, an election watchdog group said, alleging on Friday that nearly half of the groups seeking office in the May midterm polls do not represent marginalized sectors and are, in fact, backed by the rich and the powerful.
A study by election watchdog group Kontra Daya showed that 62 of the 134 official party-list groups either have links to political dynasties, represent special business interests or have questionable advocacies.
Among the party-list groups it accused of being linked to political dynasties are 1 Alliance Advocating Autonomy Party, whose first nominee is former Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez’s daughter Ana Emelita, and Abante Mindanao, whose first nominee is its former Rep. Maximo Rodriguez’s wife, Mary Grace.
Kontra Daya also slammed the inclusion of such party-list groups as 1Pacman, led by Michael Romero who has a net worth of P7 billion, and Duterte Youth whose advocacy was just to counter left-leaning groups.
It lamented the noninclusion of groups that have legitimate concerns to be brought to Congress, such as Manggagawa, Aksyon Health Workers and People Surge.
“The Comelec has allowed party-list groups of the rich and powerful to run while disqualifying groups that were organized by marginalized sectors themselves. This double standard further makes a mockery of the party-list system,” Kontra Daya’s convener Danilo Arao said in a statement.
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