MANILA—The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has trimmed the list of potential senatorial candidates for the May elections down to 77, and this could still be reduced by up to 14 names, its spokesperson said Friday.
If the poll body decides against 14 aspirants facing questions against their candidacies, the official list of 63 senatorial candidates would still be more than the 50 names allowed to join in the 2019 elections.
“We have 77 potential senatorial candidates,” Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez told reporters.
The 14 cases, he said, had been resolved but the poll body still needed certificates of finality.
A total of 134 party-list groups are included on the list, said Jimenez.
The list was down from the 182 groups that applied to join the party-list election.
Among the prominent names facing petitions are Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III and former Sen. Sergio Osmeña III.
Two cases were filed against Pimentel, arguing he could no longer run for another term.
The petitioners — lawyers Ferdinand Topacio and Glenn Chong — claimed Pimentel is on his second and last term, having assumed the post in 2011 after winning his election protest against Sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri.
The Comelec’s campaign finance office, meanwhile, sought the perpetual disqualification of Osmeña for twice failing to submit his campaign expense reports in the 2010 and 2016 elections.
Conrado Generoso, former spokesperson of the Malacañang committee that drafted a version of a federal constitution, is also protesting the Comelec’s decision to include him in its list of nuisance candidates.
The final list of candidates was supposed to be released last December.