House leaders press Comelec to proclaim Duterte Youth, Senior Citizens party-list reps

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 26 2019 04:47 PM

MANILA - Leaders of the House of Representatives on Monday filed a resolution calling on the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to proclaim party-list nominees of the Senior Citizens and Duterte Youth party-list groups.

House Resolution No. 552 was authored by House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, Majority Leader Martin Romualdez, Minority Leader Bienvenido Abante, and Deputy Speakers Michael Romero, Rodante Marcoleta, Conrado Estrella and Eddie Villanueva.

The party-list groups won a seat each in the 18th Congress in the 2019 midterm elections last May but its nominees have yet to be proclaimed due to unresolved petitions for disqualification.

Citing the Comelec’s internal rules of procedure, the House Leaders said the matter must be resolved without delay, which they said denies due process to the parties and disenfranchises the voters who voted for the two groups. 

“The continued absence of the representatives from the 2 party-lists in the House of Representatives by reason of delayed resolution of the cases constitutes violation of the Comelec on its mandate in listening to the voice of the people by avoiding the disenfranchisement of the voters.”

Comelec had disqualified Duterte Youth first nominee Ronald Cardema for being overaged. He was again nominated by the party-list but later withdrew

In September, Comelec approved the new set of substitute nominees of the party-list, which includes Ducielle Marie Suarez, Cardema's wife.

A group of young individuals has also asked Comelec to cancel the party-list group's registration for having "violated multiple provisions of the law and the Comelec Rules."

Comelec, meantime, has yet to decide on the internal dispute of the Senior Citizens party-list group.