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Comelec urged to investigate fake reso 'disqualifying' Colmenares, Makabayan bloc

Philstar.com
Comelec urged to investigate fake reso 'disqualifying' Colmenares, Makabayan bloc
This file photo shows the Commission on Elections headquarters in Manila.
Philstar.com / AJ Bolando, file

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections should investigate a fake resolution and press release claiming senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares and party-lists under the Makabayan bloc have been disqualified, the bloc said Sunday, adding the use of commissioners' names and its logo undermine the poll body's credibility and that of the elections.

The fake resolution — disowned by the Comelec on Saturday — claimed that Colmenares and the party-lists ACT Teachers, Anakpawis, Bayan Muna, Gabriela and Kabataan had lost a disqualification case against them. A disqualification case against the Makabayan bloc was dismissed in 2020 and the party-list lawmakers said it had been filed by a "fictitious petitioner" who never even appeared before the commission for hearings.

Rep. Carlos Zarate (Bayan Muna party-list) attributed the fake resolution to the National Task Force to End Communist Armed Conflict, which has been labeling the party-lists as "communist fronts" despite repeated denials of the allegation. 

"We challenge the Comelec to look into this," he said in Filipino, saying the propaganda "undermines not only the conduct of the party-list process but the elections."

Rep. Arlene Brosas (Gabriela party-list) said "the Comelec must take action on this because the names of its commissioners as well as its seal were used to fool people."

Zarate said the fake resolution and press release were "na-leak kuno (presented as leaks)" on partisan social media accounts that had previously engaged in red-tagging but colored leaflets have also been distributed in some areas.

Rep. Sarah Elago (Kabataan party-list) the Makabayan party-lists will also investigate the fake resolution and take legal action.

"The story about my disqualification is, of course, untrue," Colmenares said in a statement to media released earlier Sunday. "Bayan Muna party-list is also not disqualified as troll farms want the public to believe. This is a usual election tactic done by unscrupulous groups to discourage people from voting a candidate."

Rumors that a candidate has withdrawn, has been disqualified, or has died are among the forms of disinformation during the election season, the Comelec said in a briefing to media last year.

Party-list nominee Mocha Uson, a former Palace communications official criticized for her role in spreading "fake news", this week urged the Comelec in a statement to check on former Vice President Jejomar Binay's health, saying he had rarely been seen during the campaign and might not be healthy enough to serve if elected to the Senate.

Binay’s spokesman Joey Salgado said the former vice president is busy campaigning in the provinces and that his activities are documented on his Facebook page.

ACT TEACHERS PARTY-LIST

ANAKPAWIS PARTYLIST

BAYAN MUNA

COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS

GABRIELA PARTY-LIST

KABATAAN PARTY-LIST

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