Guanzon to Senate: Impose 1-year appointment ban vs losing party-list nominees
MANILA, Philippines — Elections Commissioner Ma. Rowena Guanzon has formally asked the Senate to include party-list nominees in the one-year appointment ban for losing candidates to bar them from being appointed immediately after elections.
Guanzon first raised the proposal in a Twitter post last week, days after Margaux “Mocha” Uson was appointed deputy administrator of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration.
The appointment came five months after Uson’s AA Kasosyo party-list group lost in the 2016 elections.
“The party-list nominees should be included in the one-year ban on appointments,” the commissioner said during Tuesday’s hearing at the Senate on various bill, including a proposal strengthening the party-list system in the country.
“The reason being there is no difference between them and those who run in the regular elections as candidates for example for congresswomen of their district,” she said.
Guanzon said people vote for a party-list group because of its nominees.
Former Elections Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal agreed with Guanzon.
“Normally when party-lists are voted, it’s personality-based vote,” Larrazabal said in the same hearing,
“The voters vote for them because of, specifically, the nominees of that party-list organization,” he added.
Larrazabal then proposed more stringent procedures on replacing and vetting of nominees. Party-list groups, he said, should also be given more leeway on replacing their nominees.
“It has happened, several instances in the past wherein which nominees of partylist organizations refused to be replaced by the partylist organizations and it has led to cases filed in court because they refused to again give way to their organization,” he pointed out. /jpv
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