There’s a chance that the House of Representatives will approve the measure that bans political dynasties this year.
Capiz Rep. Frednil Castro, chairman of the House Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms, said the bill allows only two members of a family to seek public office.
“This bill will only allow two members of a political clan to run for public office in the same election. The signals I am getting are favorable. This anti-political dynasty might be passed on second reading before the House gets into recess,” Castro said during the Ugnayan News Forum.
Castro explained that the two candidates belonging to the same family within second degree of consanguinity or affinity (parents, spouse, children, siblings, grandparents and grandchildren) will be allowed to run for either one national and local position, both national positions or both local positions. The measure will also cover those affiliated with a certain candidate due to illicit affairs as well as the children outside of marriage since they will fall under the first and second degree of affinity.
This would mean that if Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada will seek reelection in 2016, the Ejercito clan will have to decide who among San Juan City Mayor Guia Gomez (mother of Erap’s son, Senator JV Ejercito) or detained Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Ejercito (Estrada) will run for public office in 2016. If they go with Gomez, she could seek reelection for her third and last term. If they choose Jinggoy, the graduating senator could gun for higher office.
The family of Vice President Jejomar Binay will also be affected. Binay’s children Nancy, Abi and Erwin are holding elective posts. Nancy joined the Senate in 2013, Abi won as Makati’s representative at the House of Representatives while Erwin is the mayor of Makati City.
But the lawmaker said the bill may be revised to allow two more members of a clan to run in the same elections provided that they will seek public office in a different province.
“This proposal has been a consensus, and we could insert it during the period of amendments. It may not be as strict as the original version, but we want to make it acceptable without defeating the purpose of the law. If a member of the political clan will run in another province, his or her dynasty won’t operate there in the same vein anymore,” Castro said.
“This relaxation just proves that we are not after prohibition here. The bill is merely regulatory. We don’t want political clans to hold public office en masse. Walang pakyawan (It won’t be wholesale),” he added.