Poll body stays despite shift to federal form of government
by UNTV News | Posted on Friday, July 28th, 2017
“The Comelec cannot be abolished because there is a need for an agency that would supervise the election. The question would be if the Comelec will continue to be a national organization or will it be a state organization.”
This was the explanation of Comelec chairman Andres Bautista when asked about what will happen to the poll body if the proposed shift of government from democracy to federalism pushes through.
In the proposal of former Senate President Aquilino Pimentel Jr., there will be 11 federal states when the country shifts to federalism – 4 states in Luzon, another four in Visayas, and 3 in Mindanao.
Comelec Chair Andres Bautista said it will still depend on what kind of federalism the country will adapt.
Bautista said one example of federalism is United States where each state has its own election agency.
“That might possibly happen. There might be a Comelec for Luzon, for Visayas, and Mindanao. That would depend on those who would write the federalism law,” Chairman Andres Bautista said.
Comelec said it is ready to discuss its stance on the matter should congress summon the poll body regarding the proposal.
Comelec also recommends a nationwide discussion among lawmakers to help the public understand the effects of federalism in the country.
“What’s important for me is for the public to be taught and given with proper information regarding the plan to shift to a new form of government,” said Bautista.
Bautista said implementing federalism in the country will not be effective at present especially since the country is being run by a democratic government.
Shifting to a federal form of government will mean each state will be given autonomy to create their own laws like on taxation, and infrastructure.
The National Government, meanwhile, will be in charge of matters pertaining to internal and external defense, as well as foreign affairs. – Aiko Miguel | UNTV News and Rescue
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Friday, June 21st, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said Friday that the voter registration for the next election is expected to resume on August 1, 2019 and will run until September 30, 2019.
“Voter registration is expected to run Aug 1 to Sept 30, 2019, inclusive of Saturdays & holidays,”Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said in a post on Twitter.
Jimenez said approximately two million new voters are expected to register in the said period.
“SK (Sangguniang Kabataan) voters need not register anew upon turning eighteen; their names will automatically be transferred to the regular List of Voters,” he added.
Comelec data showed there were more than 61 million registered voters in the last 2019 May Midterm polls. More than 18 million of the said number are from the youth sector or the so-called Millennials and Generation Z, born in the mid-90s and early 2000s.
The poll body has been urging Filipino voters to go out and exercise their right to suffrage in order to elect honest and deserving officials.
by Aileen Cerrudo | Posted on Monday, June 17th, 2019
Youth group, Millenials PH, has filed a petition with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) seeking to disqualify former National Youth Commission chairperson Ronald Cardema as representative of the Duterte Youth Party-list.
According to Millenials PH, Cardema is already over the age limit to qualify as representative of the Duterte Youth Party-list .
Based on their 17-page petition, Cardema is already 34 years old which is over the set age limit for the party-list representatives of the youth sector which is 25 to 30 years old.
“Makikita na may material misrepresentation talaga na nangyari and ang representation talaga ng Duterte Youth ay youth sector (There really is a material misrepresentation. The representation of the Duterte Youth is the youth sector),” according to Millenials PH Spokesperson Aunell Ross Angcos.
Former Comelec Chairman Atty. Sixto Brillantes Jr., who accompanied the youth group to file the petition said Comelec should withhold Cardema’s certificate of proclamation.
“Dapat matanggal na muna ito at pumalit na ang tunay, iyong legitimate. Kaya kami pumirma rito. Willing kami i-prosecute ito diretso dito sa Comelec hanggang sa Supreme Court kung kailangan (It should be withheld first and should be replaced with the legitimate [representative]. So we signed here. We are willing to prosecute this straight to Comelec up to the Supreme Court if needed),” he said.
Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon previously said that the Duterte Youth party-list is registered as a youth sector party-list in the 2019 elections.
Meanwhile, Cardema defended that Duterte Youth is registered as a party-list group to uplift the youth and professional sector which has no age limit.
Duterte Youth won one seat in Congress. However, five of the party-list nominees withdrew their nomination, including Cardema’s wife, Ducielle Marie Suarez.
The Comelec poll body is currently conducting a hearing for the petition against Cardema.—AAC (with reports from April Cenedoza)
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Thursday, June 13th, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – At least five of the 12 winners in the 2019 Senatorial race have filed their Statement of Campaign Expenditures (SOCE) before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Thursday, June 13.
Senators Cynthia Villar and Nancy Binay led the filing of the SOCE based on Comelec records.
Villar, who clinched the number one spot with more than 25 million votes, filed her campaign expense report on June 11 or two days before the deadline set by Comelec.
Binay, who finished 12th in the race also filed her SOCE last June 11.
Poe, who nestled at the second spot, submitted her report in the afternoon of June 13, as well as Senators-elect Bong Go and Pia Cayetano, who finished third and fourth in the Senate race, respectively.
Comelec said that most of the winning and losing candidates in the May midterm polls were able to beat the SOCE filing deadline.
Section 14 of Republic Act 1766 requires every candidate and political party to file with the Commission the full, true and itemized Soce within 30 days after the election day.
Also required to file such document are those whose campaigns were self-funded, those who did not incur any expenditure, and those who did not pursue their campaign activities even after filing their candidacies or those who withdrew their candidacies.
The poll body said that based on Comelec resolution 10505, the office of an elected candidate who failed to submit the required documents shall be considered vacant pursuant to Section 11 of the Omnibus Election Code until he/she has complied within six months from the proclamation.
“They cannot assume office until they submitted their Statement of Contribution and Expenditures,” said Atty. Efraim Bag-id, acting director of Comelec campaign finance office.
The poll body emphasized the importance of the filing of SOCE as this will help them determine whether candidates and political parties followed the set campaign spending limits.
The Comelec resolution also states that winning candidates and party-lists with late SOCE filing but still within the period of six months shall be charged with lower administrative fines, depending on the position sought by the candidate.
Losing candidates, meanwhile, who failed to submit their SOCE will be meted out an administrative fine of P10,000.
“Iyong mga kandidato na natalo at hindi nakapagsumite ng kanilang Soce, depende po ito kung first timer po sila o second timer. Kapag first timer, administrative po iyan. Kapag 2 or more na beses na hindi sila nakapag- file ng kanilang SOCE e maliban sa administrative fine, they are perpetually disqualified to hold public office whether elective or appointed position,” Bag-id said.
As of 2 p.m. Thursday, 20 candidates for the Senate., 50 party-list groups and three political parties have already filed their Soce.
Comelec said other candidates and political parties may submit their Soce before the campaign finance office until 8 p.m. of June 13. (with details from Aiko Miguel)
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