SC asked to stop political dynasties
Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - October 20, 2012 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The question on political dynasties has reached the Supreme Court (SC), seven months before the midterm elections next year.

Louis Biraogo on Wednesday asked the high court in a 24-page petition to order the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to implement Article II Section 26 of the Constitution that prohibits political dynasties in polls.

Biraogo said the ban on political dynasties is clearly provided for in the charter: “The state shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service, and prohibit political dynasties as may be defined by law.”

“Whether or not political dynasties are evil per se is no longer debatable from a constitutional perspective. Sec. 26, Art. II of the 1987 Constitution prohibits political dynasties, period. Political dynasties are prohibited by the fundamental law of the land,” he argued.

Biraogo explained that the ban was put up by the framers of the Constitution as a “guarantee of equal access to opportunities for public power,” which cannot exist without the prohibition.

“The list of candidates for national and local government posts in the coming May 2013 midterm elections is the best testament to the mockery this constitutional provision has been subjected to in the hands of political dynasties,” he said.

To prove his point, Biraogo cited the family of no less than President Aquino. He said presidential cousin Bam Aquino and maternal aunt Margarita Cojuangco are both running for senator.

Bam Aquino told The STAR yesterday “it is the right of every citizen to file a case in the Supreme Court.”

“In my case, I look up to my relatives as public servants who have a long track record and I am very proud of their accomplishments,” he added.

 Biraogo also cited the clans of former President Joseph Estrada, Vice President Jejomar Binay, Sen. Edgardo Angara and Sen. Ramon Revilla.

Biraogo stressed that while there is no clear-cut definition from Congress of the term “political dynasties,” the Comelec should provide such definition.

“It is time to put an end to the continuing insult visited upon the Filipino people by the inexcusable and adamant refusal of Congress to enact legislation for the full enjoyment by the people of a guaranteed state policy,” he said.

 

BAM AQUINO BIRAOGO COMELEC DYNASTIES EDGARDO ANGARA AND SEN LOUIS BIRAOGO MARGARITA COJUANGCO POLITICAL SUPREME COURT
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