Comelec lawyers conspiring against him, says Abalos
Former Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Benjamin Abalos Sr. on Wednesday accused lawyers from the agency he used to head of “conspiring” to keep him in jail on charges of electoral sabotage in the 2007 elections.
In an emotional scene, Abalos berated Comelec lawyers led by Maria Juana Valeza, who attended hearing for his application for bail at the Pasay Regional Trial Court Branch 117 in Pasay City.
Abalos was also dismayed when the court reset the bail hearing for April 18 after the prosecution witness, former Comelec executive Lilian Suan-Radam, was absent due to an ailment.
A big group of residents from Mandaluyong gathered to cheer Abalos as he arrived at the Pasay court. Abalos was a former mayor of Mandaluyong; his son, Benhur, is the current mayor.
In the arraignment last week, Abalos refused to enter a plea, saying he would pursue his application for bail first. The judge entered a plea of not guilty for him.
Former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, former Maguindano Governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. and Abalos are accused of rigging the 2007 senatorial polls to favor the administration candidates.
Arroyo is detained at Veterans Memorial Medical Center and Ampatuan is held in Camp Bagong Diwa with the other suspects in yet another crime, the Maguindanao massacre.
Abalos is being held at the Southern Police District office-turned-jail while awaiting trial.
Originally posted at 05:38 pm | Thursday, March 28, 2012