CA grants petition to reverse ruling on Smartmatic contract awarding | Inquirer News

CA grants petition to reverse ruling on Smartmatic contract awarding

/ 04:27 PM June 03, 2016

The Court of Appeals on Friday granted the petition filed by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to reverse and set aside the decision of a Manila Court stopping the election body from proceeding with the awarding of contract for the lease of election machines from Smartmatic-TIM.

Agan, Montenegro Malagasa and Company (AMMC) filed a case before the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) questioning the Comelec’s resolution declaring Smartmatic-TIM as the winning bidder for the optical mark readers (OMRs) for the 2016 national polls.

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READ: Smartmatic-TIM bags another Comelec deal

The Manila RTC Branch 11 through Judge Cicero Jurado issued a restraining order against Comelec, favoring AMMC’s position.

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The Comelec questioned the lower court’s ruling but still proceeded with the awarding of the contract to Smartmatic.

Comelec argued that the Manila Court committed grave abuse of discretion when it issued the restraining order.

It argued that AMMC also failed to include Smartmatic-TIM in the case being an “indispensable party” and its inclusion is a mandatory requirement before the court can acquire jurisdiction over the case.

READ: Smartmatic bags deal to transmit poll results in 2016

The appeals court, in the decision written by Associate Justice Melchor Sadang, said AMMC was “merely a prospective bidder,” not a losing bidder because it failed to submit its proposal on time.

“It [AMMC] has no personality to challenge the [Comelec’s] decision.

The appeals court added that there is also no showing “and paramount necessity” that AMMC would suffer serious damage that would justify the issuance of a restraining order against Comelec.

The appeals court decision was concurred in by Associate Justices Celia Librea-Leagogo and Amy Lazaro-Javier. RAM

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TAGS: Comelec, Commission on Elections, Court of Appeals
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