• Comelec hit over Ecija lawmaker’s citizenship

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    The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is in hot water for defending Representative-elect Rosanna Vergara of Nueva Ecija, who is allegedly not qualified for the post owing to her American citizenship.

    Philip Piccio, who filed a petition questioning Vergara’s eligibility, noted that the Comelec has deemed his petition beyond the poll body’s jurisdiction, but also ruled that his petition be dismissed for lack of merit.

    Piccio, an ally of losing congressional candidate Aurelio Umali, has accused Vergara of faking her pledge of allegiance to Philippine laws and the Constitution and the renunciation of her American citizenship—requirements that made her qualified to run for the lawmaker’s post.

    “The Comelec’s logic is twisted. How can it declare the petition was lacking merit and at the same time safely claim that it has no jurisdiction about the matter? If you have no jurisdiction on the case, you have no right to declare whether the petition has merit or has no merit,” Piccio said in a statement.

    The Comelec’s First Division is composed of Christian Robert Lim, Luie Tito Guia and Ma. Rowena Guanzon.

    In backing up his claims, Piccio presented a certification from the Office of the Clerk of Court and Ex-Officio Sheriff of the Manila Regional Trial Court on May 24, 2016 that there was no notarized record of a Ria Vergara having sworn her pledge of allegiance to Philippine laws and Constitution on November 26, 2006.

    Vergara has previously claimed that her Pledge of Allegiance was notarized under Manila RTC under Book IV Doc. No. 115 Page 142.

    Moreover, Piccio also cited a letter issued by the Bureau of Immigration dated June 2, 2016 showing that the Identification Certificate No. 06-12955 it supposedly issued to Vergara in renouncing her American citizenship does not exist.

    Piccio said he will file a motion for reconsideration and elevate the case to the Court of Appeals.

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