Arao said this is the reason why Uson failed to get a seat in the House of Representatives as a party-list nominee of AA Kasosyo.
Edd Gumban
Bayan Muna mulls challenging Mocha appointment before SC
Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) - October 2, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Party-list group Bayan Muna is considering questioning before the Supreme Court (SC) the appointment of controversial pro-Duterte blogger Mocha Uson.

“We want this issue to be resolved once and for all – whether a party-list candidate who lost in an election is covered by the one-year appointment ban under the Constitution,” Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate said.

He said it is the contention of his group that the ban applies to Uson, whom President Duterte has appointed as deputy administrator of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) with a reported basic monthly salary of more than P150,000.

“The Constitution is clear. It provides: ‘No candidate who has lost in any election, shall within one year after election, be appointed to any office in the government or any government-owned or controlled corporation or in any of its subsidiaries’,” Zarate said.

He added the prohibition covers all losing candidates, including nominees of party-list groups like AA Kasosyo, whose top nominee was Uson and which failed to win a congressional seat in last May’s elections.

Zarate pointed out that in the case of congressional candidates, the Constitution does not distinguish an aspirant for a seat in a legislative district from one seeking the same post through a party-list group.

“It does not make sense to apply the appointment ban on a losing district candidate and exempt a losing party-list nominee from the same prohibition,” he stressed.

Zarate said Bayan Muna has filed a bill that seeks to amend the party-list law by introducing several reforms, including reiterating the constitutional ban on the appointment of losing party-list nominees like Uson.

“We filed this bill in previous Congresses, but unfortunately, it was not endorsed,” he said.

Poll watchdog Kontra Daya said Congress should expand the coverage of the one-year election ban on government appointments to losing party-list nominees, “given the circumstances behind the appointment of Uson.”

Kontra Daya convenor Danilo Arao said people should voice their dissent against “recycling” the likes of Uson who hardly made a difference while working with the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) and the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO).

Arao said this is the reason why Uson failed to get a seat in the House of Representatives as a party-list nominee of AA Kasosyo.

The group also questioned Mocha’s appointment to OWWA. – With Mayen Jaymalin, Robertzon Ramirez, Sheila Crisostomo

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