Experts: House must follow SC ruling on Velasco case
Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - January 24, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The House of Representatives must comply with a Supreme Court order allowing Lord Allan Velasco to assume his post as the duly elected congressman of Marinduque in the 2013 elections, according to legal experts.

Former Integrated Bar of the Philippines national president Vicente Joyas and former University of the East law school dean Amado Valdez said Speaker Feliciano Belmonte should honor the SC ruling granting Velasco’s plea.

The high tribunal ordered Belmonte to swear in Velasco, and House secretary general Marilyn Barua-Yap to register the lawmaker in the roll of House members.

“If it is final, Velasco can just take his oath and assume the position,” Valdez said.

In a ruling handed down on Jan. 12, the high court said Velasco – son of SC Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco Jr. – was the rightful representative of the lone district of Marinduque.

The elder Velasco inhibited from the case.

Joyas warned House officials that they could be charged for contempt or face fine or imprisonment, or both, if they refuse to implement the order.

Belmonte was earlier quoted as saying the House was still studying the SC order, which he said they received only on Jan. 18.

In its original ruling dated June 25, 2013, the SC dismissed a petition filed by Velasco’s rival Regina Ongsiako-Reyes, contesting her disqualification by the Commission on Elections. 

The high court ruled the poll body did not commit grave abuse of discretion when it disqualified Reyes over her citizenship. 

 

AMADO VALDEZ ASSOCIATE JUSTICE PRESBITERO VELASCO JR. BELMONTE FORMER INTEGRATED BAR OF THE PHILIPPINES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES JAN LORD ALLAN VELASCO MARILYN BARUA-YAP MARINDUQUE REGINA ONGSIAKO-REYES VELASCO
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