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Duterte to Comelec: Junk COC petition

Sheila Crisostomo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte yesterday asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to junk the petition seeking the cancellation of his certificate of candidacy (COC) for president.

In a 25-page memorandum submitted to the Comelec First Division, Duterte said the petition of broadcaster Ruben Castor should be dismissed for lack of merit.

Duterte noted that the poll body has accepted his substitution for Martin Diño as standard bearer of the Partido Demokratikong Pilipino (PDP)-Laban so the issue has become moot.

“The Comelec en banc, in its Resolution No. 10028 promulgated on Dec. 17, had accepted the COC of respondent Duterte… The resolution merely confirms the previous acts of the Comelec, all of which recognized the validity of the COC of respondent Diño,” the memorandum read.

The memorandum further stated that such acceptance “deals a death blow to the petition in this case as well as other petitions seeking to disqualify respondent Duterte, predicated on the ground that the COC of respondent Diño is ‘null and void’ due to the alleged errors in the document.

“By accepting the COC of respondent Duterte, the Comelec en banc did recognize that a valid substitution of candidacy for the position of president had taken place by operation of law between respondent Diño as the withdrawing candidate and respondent Duterte as the substitute candidate,” it added.

Duterte also argued that Castor had “waived his presence during the preliminary conference held on Dec. 15.”

At the hearing on Dec. 18, Castor appeared but did not mark any documentary evidence to support his petition.

“Hence, there is no documentary evidence submitted by petitioner to which respondent Duterte can comment or object,” the memorandum read. 

In his petition, Castor charged that the substitution is not valid because Diño was not running for president but for mayor of Pasay City as indicated in his COC.

ACIRC

ATILDE

COMELEC

COMELEC FIRST DIVISION

DAVAO CITY MAYOR RODRIGO DUTERTE

DUTERTE

MARTIN DI

PARTIDO DEMOKRATIKONG PILIPINO

PASAY CITY

RESOLUTION NO

RESPONDENT

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