Comelec: Special Negros poll a go
BACOLOD CITY—The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is pushing through with the special election on June 2 to fill the House seat vacated by the late Rep. Ignacio Arroyo of Negros Occidental’s fifth district.
Comelec Commissioner Armando Velasco said the Comelec en banc reached a consensus on Tuesday to go ahead with the election in the absence of a Supreme Court ruling on a petition that sought to stop it.
He said the Comelec had started preparations and spent P3 million of the P21.6 million allotted for the election.
“It would be a waste to call it off at this time. It would be a loss on our part not to proceed since we have already spent P3 million for the special election,” Velasco said.
But he added that if the Supreme Court would order the Comelec not to hold the election, the election body would have to comply.
Velasco said the Comelec was just implementing a resolution of the House of Representatives that called for a special election as the fifth congressional district of Negros Occidental had been rendered vacant with the death of Arroyo on Jan. 26.
But lawyer Romulo Macalintal said the special election should be held 90 days after a congressional seat becomes vacant. Since Arroyo died on Jan. 26, the election should have been on April 25 at the latest and not June 2, which was 100 days later.
But the Comelec maintained that the special election should be held 90 days from the time the House declares a congressional seat vacant.
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