Avila’s COC for Baguio mayor valid
Libang’s COC for MP rep deemed not filed
Baguio City—Last Thursday afternoon the town was “on fire” about the supposed disqualification of Atty. Edgar Avila as candidate for mayor of this city. The source of this writer’s source were supposed to be lawyers at the Comelec. It was not specified whether these were lawyers at the national or the regional office.
When this writer went to verify at the Comelec—CAR, somebody there explained that Avila was not disqualified but that his certificate of candidacy (COC) was deemed not filed. A copy of the en banc resolution was, nonetheless, requested and was obtained.
A first reading of the concerned resolution (No. 10-0286) revealed that it was on 25 newly discovered COCs which were filed but which did not use the new form or the Amended Certificate of Candidacy for the May 13, 2019 election. From the resolution there were 53 such COCs filed and which were earlier deemed not filed. Aside from these there were the aforesaid 25 newly discovered COCs filed in the old format, which did not contain Item No. 22 or a Table of Case Details.
Of these 25 COCs, 18 have accomplished Table of Case Details at the back thereof, or in the case of Avila, an additional sheet was attached as the space for the case details at the back of the COC was small or was not enough.
At any rate, on the first portion of the resolution there is a chart with a column entitled “With Table of Case Details”—either it is “yes” which meant a COC had the case details, or “no” if it did not have such. As aforesaid, 18 of the 25 had case details so “yes” was indicated on the spaces for them. In the case of Avila, it stated, “Yes (with Case Details). The rest of the 25, or seven (7), “None” was indicated. Meaning, they did not have case details.
So the Comelec Law Department recommended that the COCs of the 18 aspirants with case details “shall be valid and deemed filed…..” On the remaining seven (7) COCs, the same “shall be DEEMED NOT FILED……”
Then the dispositive portion which summarizes the ruling of the Comelec en banc, “THE Commission RESOLVED, as it hereby RESOLVES, to adopt the recommendation of the Law Department….”
Unfortunately, Avila’s camp has to work double time to disabuse the minds of voters of the misreading of the resolution. Or to get across the fact that his COC was deemed valid. His camp might opt to have a clear declaration by the Comelec of the validity of his COC but the Comelec en banc might just say that the resolution was simple enough, even for non-lawyers.
Of the aforesaid seven (7) COCs which were deemed not filed, two are those of Mountain Province candidates. One is that of Abrian Cabatsi Libang who is running for congressman of that province. Also that of Josewon Lippad Oryan who is going for the Sangguniang Bayan of the town of Barlig.**APP