• Comelec en banc upholds Poe DQ ruling – report


    Commissioners of the Commission on Election(Comelec) sitting in an en banc session on Tuesday upheld the rulings of the First and Second Divisions cancelling Sen. Grace Poe’s certificate of candidacy (COC) for President, a report in an online news portal said.

    A GMA News report, quoting sources, said the poll body dismissed Poe’s separate appeal on the rulings made by the First and Second Divisions and upheld the verdict that the 47-year-old senator is not a natural-born citizen and also failed to meet the 10-year residency requirement.

    The two requirements are set for candidates for President under the 1987 Constitution.

    The report said the Comelec is expected to promulgate the decisions on Wednesday.

    The GMA News source declined to disclose how the commissioners voted, saying the rulings of the en banc are “nuanced” after it tackled issues of jurisdiction, satisfying the requirements and whether Poe committed misrepresentation in her COC.

    Poe is expected to elevate her case to the Supreme Court (SC).

    Former Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes earlier told The Manila Times that he expects the en banc to uphold the divisions’ ruling by a vote of 5-1.

    Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista had said Commissioner Christian Robert Lim inhibited in the Second Division case because of conflict of interest. Lim was a partner in a law firm where the petitioner, Estrella Elamparo, was an associate.

    In a briefing on Tuesday, it was announced that the seven-man Comelec en banc has decided with finality on Poe’s motions for reconsideration (MR).

    Commissioner Rowena Guanzon disclosed that they would come out with the promulgated resolutions before Christmas.

    “We have voted separately on both. But the other commissioners are yet finish their separate opinions so we have to wait for that,” Guanzon said. “Certainly before Christmas, these will be finished here in the Comelec.”

    Guanzon explained that once the en banc has finished promulgating their decisions on the MR, the disqualified candidate has only five working days to get a temporary restraining order (TRO) from the High Court .

    “If it reaches the deadline and no TRO has been secured, the disqualified candidate would not be included in the [official]ballot. I am not speaking about any particular candidate,” she pointed out.

    “The sooner that we release these decisions so the parties can go to the Supreme Court, the better, not only for the parties, but also for the people,” Guanzon said.

    The motions for reconsideration refer to the decision by the Comelec Second Division on the petition filed by Elamparo for cancelation of Poe’s COC, and the consolidated cases filed with the First Division by former senator Francisco Tatad, political science professor Antonio Contreras and former law school dean Amado Valdez.

    When asked on Brillantes’ 5-1 voting forecast, Guanzon replied, “It was a good number but can’t confirm that yet.”

    She said for a commissioner to reverse his vote in favor of Poe, there has to be new evidence, new arguments or new jurisprudence.

    “The MR were exhaustive both on procedural and substantive grounds in the First Division. In fact, they cited many cases and had to study those cases also whether or not they apply,” Guanzon added.

    But she said she is forbidden from divulging her vote even as she urged reporters to “analyze from the voting in the division cases.”

    When also asked if the results of the voting are the same or not, she answered that “it can be different or the same but not all commissioners voted the same.”

    The Second Division voted 3-0 against Poe, and 2-1 in the First Division. The ruling by the two divisions indicated that 5 of the 7 commissioners voted for the disqualification of Poe.

    Also on Tuesday, Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said starting December 23, they would start loading initial data on the election management system (EMS), which would include the number of precincts and the number of voters per precinct for the 2016 elections.

    Also to be loaded, he added, are the names of some 54 million registered voters with biometrics and as well as the names of candidates without pending protest.

    But in the case of Poe and Duterte, whose pending disqualification cases are yet to be decided with finality by the SC, Jimenez said the Comelec is inclined to include them in the initial loading, adding that the final editing of all information would be done on January 8, 2016.

    “You have to understand that ultimately these cases will go to the Supreme Court. I can say, the most practical thing to do is include their names. That’s a personal opinion but it’s also a historical opinion because that was done in the past,” he added.


    Please follow our commenting guidelines.


    1. Llamanzares, tapos na ang bakasyon mo sa Pilipinas. Balik na kayo sa America at hinihintay kana nang mga bine-baby sit mo sa pre-school. Hindi talagang pwedeng maging presidenta ang banyaga dito sa aming bansa. Alis na!

    2. She said for a commissioner to reverse his vote in favor of Poe, there has to be new evidence, new arguments or new jurispruden.

      Or bribes, political favors, threats of prosecution etc…The real tools of the Liberal Party crooks.

    3. Emiliano M. Delacruz on

      Here is my two cents: I agree with Mr. Alfredo H. Moe, that the COMELEC is the governing body of Election Laws. If Grace Poe’s camp can present new evidence, new arguments, or new jurisprudence, the SC might issue a TRO. Otherwise, tapos na. I don’t think she (Poe) she can get a favorable decision from the SC.

      My hebetudinous comment: The COMELEC or the SUPREME COURT would not want that Philippines will once again be mentioned by the Time Magazine as “The Most Stupid Country in Asia by electing an American Citizen as its President.
      Remember when the people elected Nancy Binay to the Senate? Masakit po kung tatawagin ng Pinas na stupid country and Pinoys are inhabitants of Pinas, di ba?
      Sana ikukolong din si Jojo “Kurakot” Binay bago election.

      • Aquino currently has 5 Supreme court justices that he appointed and in the Philippines that probably means they will vote according to what Aquino wants regardless of what the constitution says.

        Keep a eye on how those 5 Aquino appointees vote.

    4. No problem with Comelec ‘DQ’ decision. As Guanzon says, “Parties can go the Supreme Court, the better, not only for the parties, but also for the people.” That is how to do a Pontius Pilate!

    5. Venerando Desales on

      History is again unfolding in our country. It is good that the COMELEC en banc had ruled finally the disqualification issues of Grace Poe so she can elevate her case to the Supreme Court. Whatever decision the SC will come up will enrich our jurisprudence on citizenship and qualifications of candidates. We are really in quandary as to whom to vote for President. We are left of choosing the lesser evil among the unpalatables evil doers instead of choosing the best among the goods! If Mar will only promise to hold responsible those who orchestrated the dap/pdap scam and the inept and corrupt cabinet secretaries, and stand man-up away from the yellow brigade, many of Poe’s voters, assuming she is disqualified finally, will elect Mar President of the Republic. Meanwhile, Poe is an alternative candidate and transition President should she wins her case with the SC and get elected.

    6. We need an intelligent president. If Poe is intelligent she should be intelligent enough that the constitution forbids her to be President. She should be intelligent enough to understand that the constitution is already the voice of the people. It says so in the Preamble. She should be intelligent enough to gracefully accept the decisions reached this far and gracefully exit. She should be intelligent enough to not burden more the process using people’s tax money and time. If she further pursues her course with the predictable outcome, she is not intelligent and not fit to be president.

    7. So, a child that is found abandoned in the Philippines is assumed to not have natural born citizenship? Idiots, all. Where did she come from? Somebody gave birth, flew to the Philippines and dropped her off in the hope that a famous family would adopt her? Politics suck and the laws make no sense.

      • Jus sanguinis ang umiiral sa ‘pinas,igan.Kahit na dito siya ipinanganak,kahit na mukhang pilipino ang magulang,eh kung sa araw na iyon ay hindi na sila(magulang) pilipino(baka nakakuha na ang magulang ng ibang citizenship),hindi natural born pilipino ang ipinanganak.Dapat matukoy talaga kung sino ang magulang. at alamin kung ang mga ito ay pilipino nang ipinanganak siya.Sa 1935 constirtution nga dapat pilipino ang tatay(kahit pilipino ang nanay) para masabing natural born ang isang ipinanganak.

      • A pregnant alien going to the Philippines just so she could give birth here? Yes, that’s preposterous. BUT that is only one scenario… There could be another scenario. Think of a foreign woman — maybe a tourist, maybe an illegal alien. She is made pregnant by another foreigner — maybe a fellow tourist, maybe a fellow illegal alien, maybe a soldier or sailor from the American bases here. She does not have to fly here because she is already here. So she gives birth, but for some reason cannot keep the baby. AND THERE you have an alien foundling… Lots of possibilities. One thing we cannot say is that Grace is a natural-born Filipino. Why? Because her parents are unknown.

      • She could be the daughter of a Malaysian, Thai, or any nationality that looks like a Filipino who could have stayed in the Philippines and impregnated a baby in the Philippines.

    8. Now that Comelec ruled against her candidacy, she should gather all her 30% + low inform follower and “let the people decide” personalities in the like of Ramos and Panganiban to march and protest the rulings. Everybody wants to know if her die-hard support groups will stick to her.

    9. Maraming naglolobby para wag maalis si Poe, ginagawa nila ito hindi dahil totoong gusto nila! Isa lang ang dahilan gusto nilang pigilan si duterte! Maraming manang at manong kasama na si tatad!ang mga nagtutulak dito,mukhang hindi na niya pupursigihin ang pag alis kay Poe! Dahil sa religion mas malulunok nila si Poe, binay at Mar!

    10. Is it really the Supreme Court’s duty to decide who will be the Presidential Candidate in the Philippine Political system? It will be a mockery of Justice if they will do so. The Commission on Election is the governing body when it comes to Election Laws. Their decision should be good enough for anybody to accept. I guess the Philippines is not ready yet to have a President who used to be a US Citizens, to include the whole family.

    11. I hope mas favorable ang desisyon ng SC kung ikukumpara sa COMELEC. Sana naman hindi nila gayahin ang COMELEC na binase lang sa isang document ang desisyon when in actual fact may ibang pang mga papeles na makakapagbigay ng sapat na katibayan na makakasuporta sa appeal ni Senator Grace.

      • The SC must decide according to the rule of law. It doesn’t matter whether the decision is favorable to anyone.