Comelec urged to disqualify 'bogus' party-list groups

By RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 27 2012 04:06 PM | Updated as of Sep 28 2012 12:06 AM

MANILA - Progressive party-list groups called on the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to be more vigilant against allegedly bogus party-list groups that are being used by traditional politicians as back-door entry to the House of Representatives.

Kabataan party-list Rep. Raymond Palatino said the Comelec should crackdown on political dynasties, big businesses and traditional politicians who are using the party-list system.

He called for the speedy accreditation of legitimate party-list groups, noting that it seems that legitimate party-list groups which represent the marginalized have difficulty getting accredited.

He expressed concern at allegations of pay-offs in exchange for party-list accreditation, and called on the poll body to be more decisive and hold personnel accountable. 

Palatino noted that there have been previous allegations of party-list accreditations for sale.

Palatino led other party-list groups seeking to be accredited to run in the May 2013 mid-term elections in a mobilization outside the Comelec main office in Intramuros, Manila this morning.

Clemente Bautista of the group Kalikasan, which is among those applying for accreditation, echoed Palatino's concerns.

In particular, he wants the Comelec to disqualifiy Aksyon Magsasaka and Ang Galing Pinoy. The former listed President Aquino's aunt Tingting Cojuangco as nominee, while the latter is incumbently represented in Congress by  former President Arroyo's eldest son, Mikey.

Bautista also called for a speedy, independent investigation of recent corruption allegations against the Comelec.

Likewise, Gary Martinez of the group Migrante joined Palatino and Bautista in their advocacy, and  stressed that their group has already complied with all the requirements of the Comelec.

Recently, the group Alab ng Mamamahayag alleged a Comelec employee demanded a P3-million bribe to get their party-list group accredited. 

The Comelec 2nd division had previously denied their application.