Comelec ousts Antique governor Javier for suspending mayor during 2013 poll period
ILOILO CITY, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has voted to remove Antique Gov. Exequiel Javier from his post for violation of the Omnibus Election Code.
In an interview with radio station VoiceFM in Antique on Wednesday, Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said the poll body voted on Monday to disqualify Javier who won in the May 2013 elections.
Voting four in favor and two against, the poll body disqualified Javier for suspending a municipal mayor during the election period in 2013. One commissioner was on official business and was not able to vote.
Brillantes said the ruling was based on Section 68 of the Omnibus Election Code, which has provided for the disqualification of any candidate or one holding office who has violated the code.
In a five-page order dated Jan. 12, the Comelec ruled that Javier’s suspension of Valderrama Mayor Mary Joyce Roquero was meant to “coerce, intimidate, compel or influence” her to support the governor or to “punish” her for opposing him.
Roquero used to be an ally of Javier but broke away due to political differences.
The decision will take effect five days after the receipt by Javier or his lawyers of a copy of the decision unless the Supreme Court issues a temporary restraining order, according to Brillantes.
The province’s vice governor, Rhodora Cadiao, would take over the vacated post, Brillantes said.
The criminal aspect of the case is pending before the Antique Regional Trial Court.
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