Harry Roque says he declined offer to become Comelec chairman
Updated @ 12:11 a.m., Feb. 6, 2022
MANILA, Philippines — Former Palace spokesperson and now senatorial aspirant Harry Roque said he declined an offer to become chairman of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
“Perhaps for the first time I will reveal that the post of Comelec chairman was first offered to me,” Roque told a group of reporters on Saturday.
Roque said he could not accept the offer as he was “very loyal” to President Rodrigo Duterte.
“I said, I cannot accept that because, obviously, I am presidential spokesperson, and I am correctly perceived as being loyal to the President, and that is why I decided not to accept it because I might destroy the integrity of the commission, knowing that I am very loyal to the President, which at that time, was contemplating a run for the Senate, and also the daughter was running,” Roque added.
Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas and Commissioners Rowena Guanzon and Antonio Kho Jr. officially bowed out of the poll body in solemn retirement rites last Wednesday.
President Rodrigo Duterte appointed Abas as Comelec Chairman in 2017. Then 39 years old, he was the youngest and the first Muslim to be appointed at the helm of the Comelec.
Meanwhile, Guanzon was appointed as a commissioner by President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III in 2015.
The retirement of three commissioners leaves three important posts vacant just as the elections are drawing nearer.
Commissioner Socorro Inting is now acting chairman of the poll body following the retirement of Abas.
The three other remaining Commissioners are Marlon Casquejo, Aimee Ferolino, and Rey Bulay.
Abas, Guanzon, Kho bow out of Comelec
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