MANILA — Another petition seeking to disqualify presidential aspirant Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. was filed at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) Thursday, this time by someone who claims to be the chairman of Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP), the late dictator's son's current political party.
Abubakar Mangelen, who said he is the duly-elected chairman of PFP, said Marcos' certificate of nomination and acceptance (CONA) is "unauthorized, defective, invalid, and void."
"Moreso, PFP's supposed indorsement of [Marcos] as Party's presidential standard bearer is inoperative, void, and non-existent," read the petition of Mangelen, who currently sits as commissioner of National Commission on Muslim Filipinos.
Marcos on Oct. 5 took his oath as member and chairman of PFP. The following day, Marcos filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for president under PFP.
According to Mangelen, pro-Marcos PFP members ousted them "without due process" and in violation of the party's constitution.
He said without his signature and concurrence in Marcos' CONA, the document is invalid.
Aside from seeking the invalidation of Marcos' CONA, Mangelen also wants the presidential frontrunner disqualified in the 2022 race over his 1995 conviction for tax evasion.
In a statement, PFP secretary general Thompson Lantion said Mangelen was unseated as chairman during the party's convention last Sept. 18.
"Mr. Abubakar Mangelen was unseated as chairman in the party’s convention last September 18, 2021, when the PFP indorsed Marcos, Jr. as its presidential candidate, and the position of chairman was left vacant for Marcos," Lantion said.
Mangelen's petition is the latest among the string of legal challenges against Marcos' presidential bid, considered the most contested in recent election history.
The apparent internal feud in PFP surfaced even as the Comelec has yet to resolve a similar issue hounding the ruling party PDP-Laban, which has two opposing chairmen - President Rodrigo Duterte, who only joined the party shortly before joining the 2016 presidential race, and Sen. Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III, son of the party's co-founder, the late Sen. Aquilino "Nene" Pimentel, Jr.