Man wants Pacquiao disqualified from Senate race due to absenteeism
MANILA, Philippines — Citing his “pattern of absenteeism” at the House of Representatives, a man filed a disqualification case against senatorial aspirant and Saranggani Rep. Manny Pacquiao at the Commission on Elections (Comelec),
In a two-page petition received by the Comelec late Wednesday, the petitioner, a certain Ferdinand Sevilla of Barangay La Paz, Makati City, asked the poll body to disqualify Pacquiao, and declare him a nuisance candidate, calling the boxing champion a “non-serious and a nuisance” candidate.
Pacquiao was among the buzzer beaters who filed last Friday his certificate of candidacy (COC) for senator in the 2016 elections under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) of Vice President Jejomar Binay.
“Respondent Pacquiao, who has not retired from professional boxing, cannot guarantee he will avoid absenteeism and will conscientiously attend to his mandated task of legislating if elected to the Upper Chamber of Congress,” said the petition.
“Pacquiao’s filing of COC for Senator in the upcoming national elections, therefore, comprises a sheer and shameless mockery of the election process,” it added.
However, although the petition against Pacquiao had been received by the poll body, as of press time, the Office of the Clerk of the Commission has not docketed the petition due to Sevilla’s failure to pay the filing fee of P10,100.
Based on Comelec Resolution No. 9523, no petition shall be docketed unless the requirements have been complied with.
In his petition, Sevilla cited the House of Representatives’ records showing that out of the 70 session days from Jan. 20 to Dec. 17, 2014, Pacquiao had the most number of absences with only seven days present.
In 2013, Pacquiao incurred 60 absences out of 168 session days, Sevilla added.
“While Pacquiao was consistently absent to train for his boxing bout, shoot his television programs, or shoot hoops in basketball games, he was denying his constituents representation,” said Sevilla.
“He has failed to fulifill his mandate, as well as produce relevant, significant and meaningful legislative proposals…. He has wasted time, money and other resources the government allocated to his staff operations during his two terms as Saranggani’s lone House representative,” the petitioner added.
In a recent television interview, Pacquiao said he would give his full focus on being a senator should he win in the 2016 elections.
Recognizing the much bigger responsibilities that a senator would handle, Pacquiao vowed to work harder in the upper chamber. SFM
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