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DQ petitions vs Bongbong Marcos: Casting cloud of doubt

Bongbong Marcos

MANILA, Philippines––With 5 disqualification circumstances hovering over his presidential ambition, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s bid is being thought of by the Fee on Elections (Comelec) as essentially the most legally challenged in Philippine election historical past.

The son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who dominated the nation for greater than 20 years, filed his certificates of candidacy (COC) for president final Oct. 6. Lower than a month later, people and teams who suffered underneath the late dictator’s rule filed petitions to attempt to nip Marcos Jr.’s bid within the bud.

Since Nov. 2, 5 petitions had been filed looking for to cease Marcos Jr. from bringing the Marcos identify again to the seat of energy. Three of the petitions requested the Comelec to cancel his COC, one wished him declared as a nuisance candidate and one other one wished him to be disqualified.

One petition filed on Nov. 2 claiming Marcos Jr lied in his COC when he mentioned he has by no means been discovered chargeable for any offense which carries the accent penalty of perpetual disqualification from workplace can be heard by the Comelec second division beginning on Friday (Nov. 26).

READ: Comelec to hear petition vs Marcos on Nov. 26

That petition mentioned Marcos Jr. intentionally lied when he checked the field in his COC that claims he has no file of prison conviction. Petitioners dug up a Quezon Metropolis court docket file exhibiting he was convicted of two prison circumstances—failing to pay his taxes and failing to file his tax returns. A Court docket of Appeals ruling eliminated the primary conviction however retained the second.

READ: Petition to cancel COC of Bongbong Marcos filed before Comelec

The method, nonetheless, is simply the daybreak of a prolonged authorized course of. Election legislation Prof. Alberto Agra instructed INQUIRER.internet that, in most situations, such a case much like Marcos Jr.’s is heard by a division of the Comelec, the Comelec en banc after which the Supreme Court docket en banc.

Graphic by Ed Lustan

Agra noticed this course of unfolding:

  • Comelec division begins listening to the disqualification petitions
  • A decision is promulgated by the Comelec division
  • The Comelec division receives motions for reconsideration if it decides both means
  • The Comelec en banc resolves the movement for reconsideration and promulgates a decision
  • A petition for certiorari and petition for TRO is filed on the Supreme Court docket by both camp
  • The SC en banc resolves the petition and promulgates a decision
  • A movement for reconsideration is filed by both camp
  • The SC en banc resolves the movement for reconsideration and decides the case with finality

Within the final 15 years, this was the best way the Comelec and the SC resolved circumstances filed in opposition to the presidential bids of the late Fernando Poe Jr., former President Joseph Estrada and Sen. Grace Poe in 2004, 2010 and 2016.

Prolonged authorized combat

INQUIRER.internet took a detailed have a look at the SC choices which contained particulars of the circumstances––their origin and the way they had been resolved. Poe Jr.’s took two months, Estrada’s took 9 months whereas Poe’s took six months.

Graphic by Ed Lustan

Trying again, right here’s how the circumstances had been determined with finality:

Oct. 15, 2015: Poe, who had 20,337,327 votes in 2013, filed a COC for president within the 2016 elections. The next day, a petition to cancel Poe’s COC was filed by Estrella Elamparo, saying that Poe dedicated materials misrepresentation.

Elamparo mentioned Poe dedicated materials misrepresentation when she said that she was a natural-born Filipino citizen and a resident of the Philippines for at the least 10 years. This was raffled to the Comelec’s second division.

Dec. 1, 2015: The Comelec second division, in its decision, mentioned Poe’s COC contained materials illustration which was “false”. A movement for reconsideration was filed by Poe.

Dec. 11, 2015: Resolving the petitions filed by Francisco Tatad, Antonio Contreras, and Amado Valdez, the Comelec first division mentioned Poe dedicated materials misrepresentation, saying that she was not a natural-born Filipino citizen and that she failed to finish the 10-year residency requirement. Poe filed a movement for reconsideration.

Dec. 23, 2015: The Comelec en banc denied Poe’s movement for reconsideration in relation to the resolutions made by the primary and second divisions which mentioned that she dedicated materials misrepresentation.

Dec. 28, 2015: Poe filed a petition for certiorari on the Supreme Court docket and requested for the issuance of TROs to cease the Comelec from cancelling her COC for president. The TROs had been later issued by the SC.

Jan. 12, 2016: The SC consolidated the 2 circumstances that had been determined by the 2 Comelec divisions.

March 8, 2016: In a 9-6 vote, the SC granted Poe’s petitions, saying that she was a natural-born Filipino citizen and a resident for 10 years and 11 months. The SC en banc additionally mentioned the Comelec dedicated grave abuse of discretion. Motions for reconsideration had been filed.

April 9, 2016: The SC en banc “denied with finality” all of the motions for reconsideration that had been filed in opposition to the SC resolution dated March 8, 2016 which reversed the selections promulgated by the Comelec.

Dec. 31, 2003: Poe Jr. filed a COC to run for president within the 2004 elections.

Jan. 9, 2004: Victorino Fornier initiated a petition which requested the Comelec to disqualify Poe Jr. and cancel his COC, saying that Poe Jr. dedicated materials misrepresentation by claiming that he was a natural-born Filipino citizen.

Jan. 23, 2004: The Comelec dismissed the petition for lack of benefit. A movement for reconsideration was filed by Fornier. This was denied by the Comelec en banc in a decision dated Feb. 6, 2004.

Feb. 10, 2004: To assail the choice of the Comelec, Fornier went to SC. He requested the SC to subject a TRO that will stop the finality of the Comelec resolution. The opposite petitions that had been consolidated with Fornier’s embrace these filed by Maria Tecson, Felix Desiderio Jr. and Zoilo Velez.

March 3, 2004: In an 8-5 vote, the SC en banc mentioned the Comelec didn’t commit grave abuse of discretion in deciding that Poe Jr. was eligible. It mentioned Poe Jr. was a natural-born Filipino citizen underneath the phrases of the 1935 Structure.

Nov. 30, 2009: Estrada, who was ousted from Malacañang in 2001, filed his COC for the 2010 elections to run for president once more.

Dec. 4, 2004: Lawyer Evillo Pormento filed a petition on the Comelec to hunt the disqualification of Estrada, saying that Estrada, who was elected to the presidency in 1998, was not eligible for reelection because the 1987 Structure restricted presidents to only one time period.

Jan. 20, 2010: The Comelec second division dismissed Pormento’s petition, together with the petitions filed in opposition to Estrada by Ely Pamatong and Mary Lou Estrada due to lack of benefit. A movement for reconsideration was filed, nonetheless, and denied by the Comelec en banc.

Could 7, 2010: Pormento, three days earlier than the 2010 elections, filed a petition for certiorari on the SC.

Aug. 31, 2010: The SC determined that the problem grew to become moot when Estrada misplaced the elections. However the excessive court docket mentioned the petition filed by Pormento doesn’t stop the execution of the Comelec decision and there was no petition for TRO filed by Estrada on the SC.


Election lawyer Emil Marañon III instructed INQUIRER.internet that there have been situations when a case is resolved instantly. Nevertheless, it’s additionally potential {that a} case may take two years, mentioned Marañon.

He mentioned it’s going to depend upon the discretion of the Comelec division, explaining that there have been circumstances that may be resolved in a month or two whereas there have been circumstances that had been nonetheless pending even one or two years after the elections.

The interval it might take to settle the circumstances in opposition to Marcos Jr. is unsure. However Ma. Ela Atienza, political science professor at College of the Philippines Diliman, mentioned the approaching months can be crucial for the late dictator’s son.

“The circumstances have to be resolved quickly. If not resolved instantly, it might sway the potential backing of non-solid Marcos Jr. voters,” Atienza instructed INQUIRER.internet.

In 2015 Poe filed her COC to run for president at a time when her desire ranking was highest amongst presidential aspirants on the time. Based on outcomes of a Social Climate Stations survey from Sept. 2 to Sept. 5, Poe had a 26 % desire ranking.

Because the disqualification petitions in opposition to her had been filed, she retained a 26 % desire price in a survey held from Dec. 12 to 14. Nevertheless, one other presidential aspirant, then Vice President Jejomar Binay caught up and tied with Poe.

Graphic by Ed Lustan

From Feb. 5 to 7 in 2016, with disqualification circumstances nonetheless pending on the SC, Poe slid all the way down to second with a 24 % desire ranking. Binay took the lead with a 29 % price.

In the identical yr, Poe took the lead once more in a March 4 to 7 survey with a 27 % desire price. Nevertheless, in a March 30 to April 12 survey, even after the SC granted her petition, Poe, with 23 %, ranked second to then Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.

Belief in Comelec

Gerardo Eusebio, a political science professor of the De La Salle College, instructed INQUIRER.internet that because the Comelec commissioners had been all appointed by the President, Marcos Jr.’s voters might understand a menace that the election officers would vote in opposition to Marcos Jr.

This was the rationale Atienza mentioned the circumstances must be resolved instantly. “At stake as properly is the general public belief and notion within the Comelec. It should be simply,” she mentioned.

Atienza mentioned the Comelec shouldn’t delay its resolution so that it’ll not be perceived as keen on a selected candidate.

READ: Group urges Comelec to act on petitions vs Bongbong Marcos candidacy

Eusebio mentioned how the Comelec acts might be carefully watched by the voters, who’re anticipated to make their selections primarily based on a number of components—if the Comelec had been honest to their candidate, candidate’s habits, info and different nuances that might come up within the subsequent 5 months.

Stable voters

For Atienza, whereas the following months might be crucial for Marcos Jr., he was anticipated to retain the help of Marcos loyalists.

Ador Torneo, a political science professor of the De La Salle College mentioned “laborious supporters” are strongly dedicated to their candidates no matter occurs.

“They are usually personally and emotionally invested and are unlikely or least prone to be perturbed by hindrances like a disqualification case,” he instructed INQUIRER.internet.

“Tender supporters are usually not as dedicated and really prone to waver and alter their vote, particularly within the face of points like a disqualification case,” mentioned Torneo. “Undecided voters are nonetheless uncommitted however are much less prone to help a candidate that has a pending disqualification case,” he mentioned.

Atienza defined that mushy supporters and the undecided could also be cautious of those authorized questions surrounding Marcos Jr’s bid to convey his household again to Malacañang. “They would like a candidate with out questions on eligibility and don’t wish to waste their votes,” she mentioned.

“They could have a look at different candidates as choices ought to Marcos be deemed ineligible to run,” she mentioned.

She mentioned this might profit Sen. Bong Go and people who are “not all-out opposition” like Sen. Panfilo Lacson, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, and Manila Mayor Isko Moreno since “they share some similarities relating to the popular packages and continuity of among the President’s insurance policies and packages.”


Comelec: Summons issued for petition to cancel Bongbong Marcos’ COC

Marcos camp disputes bases for DQ petitions

91 petitions to cancel candidacies filed before Comelec


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