FILE PHOTO: Vacant seat a COMELEC En Banc (UNTV News)
MANILA, Philippines – A new head of the Commission on Audit (COA) was announced on Wednesday but the chairmanship of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) still remains vacant.
The position was vacated last February 2 when commissioner Sixto Brillantes Jr’s term expired.
2 commissioners also retired from service that day bringing up the number to 3 vacant post in the supposed to be a 7-man COMELEC en banc.
COMELEC Spokesman James Jimenez said the commission still functions with only 4 commissioners because it still comprised a quorum.
Jimenez, however, emphasized that they prefer a complete en banc.
“A complete COMELEC would be better but are we suffering from having only four hindi naman. We do have a quorum and we can do business now and so things are going as usual. The only real complication here is that none of the 4 can be absent anymore. They have to always be around,” he said.
Jimenez also noted that the commission is not functioning without a leader because Commissioner Christian Robert Lim serves as the acting chairman.
In terms of voting, the 4 commissioners must all agree for a resolution to pass.
The 2 divisions of COMELEC that handles election related cases both lacks a member.
Right now only 2 commissioners are sitting in both divisions.
“Mas marami kaming magtatrabaho mas gagaan ng kaunti. Kung mas marami mas masaya,” COMELEC Commissioner Luie Guia said.
(The load will be lighter if many are working. The more the merrier.)
Commissioner Luie Guia hopes that when the new chairman and commissioners are appointed, the transition period will not be complicated and the work will flow smoothly, especially in the preparations for the 2016 elections, which is just 14 months away. (Victor Cosare / UNTV News)