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Comelec chair Bautista maintains he will not step down ahead of his resignation

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, October 12th, 2017

Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista

MANILA, Philippines – Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista was surprised over the results of the voting at the House of Representatives, Wednesday, where the majority of lamwakers voted to impeach him.

In a vote of 137 – 75 – 2, the impeachment complaint against the poll chief passed in the Lower House of Congress and is now being forwarded to the Senate, which will stand as the impeachment court.

“We know that the House Committee on Justice dismissed the impeachment complaint. Not just once but twice. That’s why when they voted in the plenary… I never anticipated the result. But I respect their opinion,” Bautista said.

Bautista, however, insists that he upholds his decision to remain as the poll chief until December.

It can be recalled that before the voting on the impeachment complaint in the plenary, Bautista announced his resignation effective on the first day of January next year.

He said until the President issued a decision on the matter, and until Mr. Duterte finds a replacement, his work in the commission continues.

“I think it is disrespect to the President. We should give the President the time to answer my letter. If he thinks I must be replaced immediately, I am okay with that,” Bautista said.

But Bautista said before he submitted his resignation letter to the President, he met first with executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea last Tuesday.

He said they agreed that he will leave his position on the 31st of December to give the President the time to find a replacement.

“In fact, he even asked me if I can recommend someone to replace me. And I asked him if they have already someone in mind, he said none,” Bautista said.

The poll chief said he is now preparing to face the impeachment court as well as the new case his wife plans to file against him. – Aiko Miguel | UNTV News & Rescue

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Probe will proceed despite Bautista’s resignation – Sen. Escudero

by UNTV   |   Posted on Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

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MANILA, Philippines — The Senate Committee on Banks and Financial Institutions and Currencies will continue its investigation into an alleged ill-gotten wealth of resigned Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman Andres Bautista.

The committee’s chairman Senator Francis Escudero said it will now be easier for them to invite Bautista since he no longer has immunity from the suit after leaving government service.

Escudero explained that the former Comelec chief left many unanswered questions during the previous hearing of the Senate.

These include the senator’s notes, the discovery of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Anti-Fraud Division of suspicious transactions in the Luzon Development Bank.

The NBI claimed to have discovered accounts of the companies sequestered by the Presidential Commission on Good Government under the leadership of Bautista.

“According to regulation, all deposits of an agency and companies owned by the government sequestered or not, should be put to the government depository bank, landbank or DBP. It’s better to ask chairman Bautista why he decides to transfer all of it there,” said Escudero.

The senator said that if the former poll chief fails to answer the questions during the next senate inquiry, he might face multiple charges.

“If he could not explain, where the money comes from, his unexplained wealth, he may face graft or plunder,” said Escudero.

Bautista previously said he was ready to face and answer all allegations being thrown against him particularly by his wife, Mrs. Patricia Bautista. — Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

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HoR terminates impeachment vs. resigned poll chief Andres Bautista

by UNTV   |   Posted on Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

MANILA, Philippines — The House Committee on Justice will no longer continue writing the articles of impeachment against resigned Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman Andres Bautista.

This was after the committee received a copy of a letter from Malacañang about the resignation of the poll chief.

According to House Committee Chairman Reynaldo Umali, Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea personally called to inform him about the decision of the president that the resignation of Bautista is effective immediately.

The committee decided to just accept the evidence from the resource persons as part of the process. The set evidence was supposed to be used for the writing of the articles of impeachment.

The House committee is set to release a report that formally ends the impeachment process.

“It has ended well for the House of Representatives and also for the Senate because this will really relieve us of the many things we ought to do,” said Umali.

“It’s done. It’s much relief on our part,” said Tish Bautista, the estranged wife of the poll chief.

Meanwhile, Tish Bautista believes their fight has just begun.

Because after the resignation of her estranged husband, they are now preparing for the plunder charges they plan to file against him.

“We are on the road to making him accountable to the Filipino people for everything that he is stolen plunder case will be filed against the people responsible we are just waiting for the NBI to complete its report,” said Atty. Lorna Capunan, legal counsel for Tish Bautista.

UNTV News Team tried to get Mr. Bautista’s comment on the matter, but as of this writing, he has not yet responded to our calls and text messages.  — Grace Casin | UNTV News & Rescue

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CJ Sereno’s camp files rejoinder in HOR

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, October 2nd, 2017

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Manila, Philippines – The camp of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno has filed a rejoinder to the House Committee on Justice, Monday.

It was the chief justice’s answer to the verified reply submitted by Atty. Lary Gadon, the complainant of the impeachment rap against her.

The rejoinder states that Gadon failed to prove his allegations written in the complaint.

It also restates the appeal of the Chief Justice to dismiss the impeachment complaint.

“Iginigiit uli ni Chief Justice na karapat-dapat nang ibasura yung impeachment compaint laban sa kanya. Kung sakaling magdesisyon ang mga miyembro ng House Committee on Justice na ipagpatuloy ang pagdinig, patuloy pa rin ang kanyang panawagan na sana igalang ang kanilang House rules on impeachment kasama na dito ang paggalang sa kanyang karapatan na makumpronta ang mga testigo laban sa kanya,” said CJ Sereno’s spokesperson Atty. Josa Deinla.

(Translation: The chief justice insists the dismissal of the impeachment complaint against her. Should the House Committee on Justice decide to push through with the hearing, she will continue to appeal for the observance of the House rules on impeachment which includes respecting her right to confront the witnesses against her.)  – UNTV News & Rescue

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