Comelec told to comment on ER Ejercito’s TRO bid | Inquirer News
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Comelec told to comment on ER Ejercito’s TRO bid

/ 06:39 PM May 27, 2014

MANILA, Philippines—Embattled Laguna Governor Emilio Ramon “ER” Ejercito failed to get immediate relief from the Supreme Court in his bid to stop the Commission on Elections from implementing its decision disqualifying him from office.

Laguna Governor Emilio Ramon “ER” Ejercito. ROMY HOMILLADA

Instead, the high court ordered Comelec to respond to the petition filed by Ejercito within 10 days upon receipt of its resolution.

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“Upon written recommendation of the member in charge, respondents are required to comment on the petition as well as the application for a SQAO (Status Quo Ante Order) or TRO/writ of preliminary injunction within 10 days from notice,” high court’s Information Chief Theodore Te said in a text message to reporters.

Meanwhile, Ejercito’s lawyer Enrique dela Cruz, in reaction to the high court’s ruling, said in a text message “this only shows that the Comelec order is not yet final and cannot be implemented. To do so will be pre-empting the SC. It is an act of discourtesy.”

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Former Governor Ramil Hernandez already took his oath as the new Laguna governor.

In his 22-page petition, Ejercito said the Comelec violated his rights when it issued the “haphazard” ruling.

Petitioner also said that the Comelec committed grave abuse of discretion in disqualifying him when the petition filed against him was only for a request to initiate a criminal proceeding for violation of election laws.

He argued that the poll body wrongly assumed that the case was for his disqualification contrary to the rule under Section 68 of the Omnibus Election Code.

Section 68 of the Omnibus Election Code requires that “a party is declared by final decision of a competent court guilty of or found by the Commission of …spent in his election campaign an amount in excess of that allowed by this Code…shall be disqualified from continuing as a candidate or if he has been elected, from holding the office.”

He stressed that instead of disqualifying him from office, the Comelec should have instead filed a criminal complaint against him or first ordered a conduct of an inquiry on allegations of overspending.

He noted that what was filed by his rival in the election, Edgar “Egay” San Luis of the ruling Liberal Party, before the poll body was only for a request to initiate a criminal proceeding for violation of election laws.

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“Indeed, a judgment meting out the penalty of disqualification before the conduct of a preliminary investigation into the factual allegations thereof is premature and constitutes a clear violation of petitioner’s right to due process,” added the petition.

RELATED STORIES

ER Ejercito appeals disqualification

 ER Ejercito can still ask SC to reverse ouster as Laguna governor

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TAGS: Comelec, ER Ejercito, Laguna, News, poll spending, Regions
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