MANILA, Philippines - The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it cannot disqualify party-list nominees just because they are allies of President Arroyo or have questionable background.
In a press briefing, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said that under Resolution 8807, the Comelec may only exclude a nominee based on basic requirements like if he is a nominee of more than one organization.
“Our resolution is very specific on cases we can act on motu propio. If they fall within Section 7 of the Resolution … on basic requirements. These are clear cut cases that have no defense possible,” he said.
“We understand the concerns of various groups and, of course, they want results right away but ultimately, the subjects of their complaints still have their rights,” Jimenez maintained.
In a statement, electoral reform group Kontra Daya had asked the Comelec to disqualify such nominees motu propio.
Malacañang, meanwhile, said the opposition should respect whatever decision the Comelec issues on the matter.
“It is the Comelec that is the authority in determining the qualifications of party-list groups,” deputy presidential spokesman Gary Olivar said.– Sheila Crisostomo, Paolo Romero