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Comelec cancels Edu Manzano’s bid for Congressional seat

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019

Former OMB Chairman Edu Manzano

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Monday canceled the Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) of actor Edu Manzano, who is running for a congressional seat for the lone district of San Juan City.

The 15-page Comelec Second Division decision reads that the poll body has granted the petition filed by Sophia Patricia Gil, a San Juan City resident, in November 2018 which claimed that Manzano misrepresented himself by declaring that he is a Filipino citizen when he filed his CoC for the May Midterm elections.

“Respondent is not a Filipino citizen at the time he filed his COC for a member of the House of Representatives for the lone district of San Juan City,” Comelec stated in its decision released on May 6.

It added that Manzano committed false material representation of his citizenship, prompting the poll body to cancel his COC.

Comelec said Manzano failed to re-acquire his Filipino citizenship at the time that he filed his COC in October last year.

Manzano lost his Filipino citizenship when he served as a member of the United States Army from 1973 to 1977, according to Section 1-4 of the Commonwealth Act (CA) No. 63.

Comelec explained that the “C.A. No. 63 is clear and explicit in stating that by rendering service to, or accepting commission in, the armed forces of a foreign country, a Filipino will lose his Philippine citizenship.”

Manzano became Makati vice mayor in 1998. He lost, however, when he took a mayoral bid in 2001. He had also run in the vice presidential and senatorial race in 2010 and 2016, respectively.

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Duterte not endorsing anyone for House Speaker; lets congressmen decide

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Wednesday, June 26th, 2019

President Rodrigo Duterte. | ACE MORANDANTE/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – The race for the next speaker of the House of Representatives (HOR) gets more intense less than a month before the 18th Congress formally opens.

Government allies have been waiting for President Rodrigo Duterte to make a decision on who he thinks the next speaker should be who could help him push his administration’s legislative agenda.

During the oath taking ceremony at Malacañang on Tuesday (June 25), President Duterte asked newly elected congressmen to give him until June 28 to make a decision.

However, the President seems to prefer not to endorse anyone for the speakership post.

In his speech, President Duterte said he asked House Speaker Gloria Arroyo to choose her own successor.

The conversation, he said, happened during the Hugpong ng Pagbabago’s thanksgiving party.

The President said he asked Arroyo to spare him the burden of having to choose among his friends who were vying for the post.

“Sabi ko, ikaw na ang mamili ng speaker, (I told [Arroyo] to choose a speaker for me),” the President said.

“Tinawag ko si Cayetano, Alvarez, si Velasco, si Bebot na hindi naman lumapit. ‘Mamili ka na, ma’am,’ sabi ko, ‘hindi ako nagbobolahan.'”

(I called Cayetano, Alvarez, Velasco and Bebot. I told her, “You choose, ma’am. I am not joking.”)

“‘I will ask a favor from you [Arroyo]. Huwag mo na akong bigyan ng sakit ng loob (Don’t make it hard for me) because they are all my friends. I do not want to hurt anybody lalo na iyan. Ikaw na lang, tutal ikaw ang pinaka-senior dito, (I’ll let you do it, after all, you are the most senior here),” he added.

President Duterte did say that the incumbent Speaker refused to choose the next House leader for him.

He then told the congressmen to pick their leader themselves and make their decision.

“You have to decide. You can do it by party (or) affiliation. You can take out of Hugpong for the meantime because it’s just a foisted political party for the purpose of election,” the President said.

“Huwag na lang akong isali ninyo, (Just spare me),” he concluded.

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Youth groups stage protest vs Cardema’s congressional bid as Duterte Youth rep

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, June 19th, 2019

Youth groups congregated in front of the office of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to protest against the congressional bid of former National Youth Commission (NYC) chairman Ronald Cardema under the Duterte Youth party list.

Kabataan Partylist, Youth Act Now Against Tyranny and other youth groups voiced their opposition to Cardema’s bid and appeal to Comelec to junk the former official’s petition for a seat in Congress.

This, they say, will give Comelec the opportunity to prove that the last election was indeed fraud-free.

The group stressed that Cardema is not qualified to represent a youth group.

Comelec commissioners Rowena Guanzon and Luie Tito Guia had earlier stated Cardema cannot take a seat in Congress under the Duterte Youth party list for several grounds:

  1. that Cardema was not able to comply with the submission of documents when the Duterte Youth filed their Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance (CONA); and
  2. that Cardema already past the age requirement of 30 for a youth representative

Comelec is yet to come up with a final decision. (with reports from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf

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Comelec delays decision until petition vs Cardema is resolved

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, June 19th, 2019

Former National Youth Commission Chair Ronald Cardema

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has yet to come up with a final decision on the case of National Youth Commission (NYC) chairman Ronald Cardema as a new petition has been filed before the poll body against his nomination as Duterte Youth representative.

Former Comelec chair Sixto Brillantes Jr. and election lawyer Romulo Macalintal on Monday (June 17) filed a petition before the poll body to reject Cardema’s substitution bid.

Comelec First Division resumed hearing on Wednesday.  

“Pangalawa na po ito at pirmado ng mga Abugadong si Atty Sixto Brillantes at si Atty Romulo Macalintal. Dahil dito may hearing po ang First Division,” Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said.

She added, “maaaring ma- consolidate o isasabay na ang pagdedesisyon sa mga kasong ito para mapadali ang pag- resolusyon.”

Guanzon also said that they will not release their final decision until the hearings on all the petitions against Cardema’s bid for a congressional seat.

Guanzon and Commissioner Luie Tito Guia also stressed that Cardema cannot assume the position as the representative of Duterte Youth because he and the party-list group were not able to comply with the submission of documents when they filed their Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance (CONA).

The two Comelec officials added that Cardema is already past the required age of 30.

Under Republic Act 7941 or the Party-list System Act, youth party-list representatives must be within 25 and 30 age range.

Cardema’s camp, on the other hand, had earlier reiterated that Duterte Youth does not only represent the young people but also the young professionals that is why he is still qualified to sit as its first nominee. (with reports from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf

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