DQ of nuisance, party-list bets upheld by high court
THE SUPREME Court on Tuesday upheld the Commission on Elections’ (Comelec) decision to disqualify nuisance candidates and party-list groups from the May elections, saying the poll body “did not act with grave abuse of discretion” in barring them from seeking public office.
The high court en banc junked petitions to stop the disqualification of individuals seeking national positions and upheld the Comelec rulings “canceling petitioners’ respective certificates of candidacy (COC) on the ground of their being nuisance candidates.”
Among those barred were former Presidential Commission on Good Government chair Camilo Sabio, who filed a COC for President.
Sabio had been perpetually disqualified from holding public office since December 2011, after he was found guilty of grave misconduct and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service.
He was found guilty of trying to influence his brother Jose Sabio, at the time a Court of Appeals justice, in a 2008 case involving the Manila Electric Co. and the Government Service Insurance System.
Party-list groups dismissed
Also disqualified from the presidential race was Vetallano Acosta, who also ran for President in 2010 under the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan. The high court likewise upheld the cancellation of the COC of senatorial candidate Gion Villamor Gounet.
In separate minute resolutions, the high court also “uniformly” dismissed petitions 17 party-list groups had filed to stop Comelec orders dismissing their respective petitions for registration and accreditation.
The disqualified party-list groups are Ang Bayaning Kawal at Pulis Inc. (Abakap); Alyansa ng Katutubong Pilipino (Akap); Association of Direct Vendors, Agents, Networking Circles and Entrepreneurs
(Advance); Witnesses for a Transparent and Equitable Society; Lingap Balen; Sulong Katutubo; Ating Aral Regional (NCR) Sectoral Party of the Women and Youth Sector; Essential New Generation in Needs of Energy and Environment Resources Inc. (Engineer); Philippine Alliance for Responsible Trade by Nation Builders (Partners); Alliance of Public Transport Organization Inc. (1-Apto); Pilipinas Para sa Pinoy (PPP); Chronic Kidney Disease (Ang CKD); Angat Ahon Magsasaka Inc. (AAM); Women and Child Crime Abuse Assistance (Waccaa); Ang Siguro Inc.; United Women Against Poverty (Uwap) and Isang Lapian ng Mangingisda at Bayan Tungo sa Kaunlaran (1-Lambat).
The high court’s ruling was released just as Comelec finalized the list of candidates for the May polls which is expected to be out by February.
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