SC junks plea to declare failure of polls in Maguindanao


THE Supreme Court (SC) has junked the bid of Mayor Nasser Imam of Matnog, Maguindanao to declare a failure of elections in some precincts in the 2013 elections.

In a full court ruling, promulgated by clerk of court Enriqueta Vidal, the High Court dismissed Imam’s petition for being late.

In his petition, Imam argued that a failure of elections should have been declared in Clustered Precinct No. 4 in Barangay Bayanga Norte due to the alleged election-related violence.

But the High Court ruled that the petition should be junked “for having been filed out of time, or only on December 27, 2013”.

The SC noted that Imam’s petition did not meet the 30-day reglementary period since he only had until November 11, 2013 to file his petition for certiorari before the High Court.

The SC said the alleged election-related violence Imam mentioned in his petition was merely an isolated incident, “considering that while election proceedings were indeed interrupted at 1:30 in the afternoon of the polls, such interruption was only momentary since as soon as the disturbance settled down, the proceedings resumed smoothly until the voting hours closed at 7 in the evening [during the May 2013 elections]”.

“A failure of election exists only if the will of the electorate has been defiled, but if it is determinable, it must be accorded respect, as in this case,” the SC pointed out.


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