President Benigno Aquino 3rd could still appoint outsiders to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to replace three commissioners who will retire in 2015.
Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte issued the statement in response to the call made by the Comelec-Employees’ Union (Comelec-EU) urging the president to appoint insiders to lead the poll body since they know the inner workings and fundamentals of running Comelec affairs.
Valte noted that the president always takes the best possible candidates into consideration for any vacancy in government, not only in Comelec.
“We are cognizant of the call to appoint an insider. But of course, as always, the president considers the best interests of the agency and the people when it comes to the appointment,” Valte told Radyo ng Bayan.
The threee Comelec commissioners retiring next year are: Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr., Lucenito Tagle and Elias Yusoph who all have completed their respective seven-year terms by then.
The presidential appointees who will replace the three Comelec officials are expected to pass through the proverbial eye of the needle, considering that their appointment will happen a year before the 2016 presidential polls.
“The president is aware of the factual situations and of the factual circumstances regarding and surrounding the appointment,” Valte added.
The three retirement-bound officials are all outsiders.
Brillantes was a longtime election lawyer, while Tagle is a retired Court of Appeals justice.
Yusoph served as provincial prosecutor in Marawi City before landing a commissioner post at the poll body.
The other Comelec commissioners are Christian Lim, Al Parreno, Luie Guia and Arthur Lim.