Monday, June 25, 2012

PARTY-LISTS MATTERS

PARTY-LIST RANDOM LISTINGS AND NOMINEES
for May 13, 2013 National & Local Elections


Aside from Random Listing of Party-List groups in the May 13, 2103 National and Local Elections – raffling the party list slots in the ballot – the Commission on Elections is also planning to change its standards for party-list nominees to get rid of unqualified groups or nominees.

Comelec Chairman Sixto S. Brillantes,  Jr. said, “We are trying to be very strict in the selection, in the accreditation. For nominees, we are talking about qualifications. We have the basic requirements – you have to represent the sector, you have to be marginalized or underrepresented. This is the basic and this is where the problem came from.” 

Comelec Spokesman James Jimenez explained that “what the Chairman is saying is that the interpretation of marginalized sector before was more liberal. Now we won’t be liberal anymore. We will strictly construe the provision in the law.”

Under Republic Act No. 7941 or the Party-List System Act of 1995, a party-list nominee shall be a “bona fide member of the party or organization which he seeks to represent for at least 90 days preceding the day of election.”

“Now, what we are saying is that there is other jurisprudence after the law that it need not be like that. The nominee instead should be part of the sector. So the old (policy) no longer applies.”

Atty. Romulo Macalintal, a noted lawyer, agrees and subscribe with the Comelec position on Random Listings and defended the action of the Commission on Elections saying that, “No law or right of any party-list groups has been violated by the Comelec Resolution No. 9467 directing the random listing of party-list groups in the ballots for the May 13, 2013 elections by raffling of their names to determine the order of there listing.”

“It is within the power of the Comelec to institute such reformative poll measures in order to ensure a more credible election and to be fair to party-list groups that honestly came up with a name or acronym that befits its organization to those who take advantage of being first in the list by using names beginning with letter “A” or number “1” although very clearly not connected with or relevant to their cause or organization,” Macalintal said.

"For sure, from the very start of this party list system, the Comelec knew the intentions of these party-list groups, regrettably, the poll body practically tolerated or allowed them, to abuse its liberality'" he said.

"The system introduced by the Comelec is a very innovative one and a seasoned election lawyer like Comelec Chairman Sixto  S. Brillantes, Jr., who could have conceived of this brilliant idea with the able support of the other Commissioners should be congratulated for coming up with this resolution that will put an end to the apparent bad faith of some party-list groups in using such names," added Macalintal.

VOTERS' PLEDGE

I am a Responsible and Principled Citizen.

I will educate myself and others about the issues at hand so that my vote is a meaningful and relevant exercise of my right of suffrage.

I pledge to vote for candidates who will abide by the duly constituted rules on campaigning because I understand that those who refuse to obey the law in the little things are not likely to obey the law in the more important things;

I pledge to vote for candidates who, by word and action, renounce violence, coercion, vote-buying, and corruption as means for getting elected;

I pledge to vote for the candidates who listen to their constituents and are responsive to the needs and aspirations of those they seek to represent;

I pledge to vote as my conscience dictates in all elections.

I make these promises freely and upon my honor.

(This Voter Pledge was read at the Unity Walk of 13 January 2013, by COMELEC Commissioner Elias R. Yusoph)

SOURCE: NAMFREL