Possible 'political interference' in Marcos DQ case slammed

Davinci Maru, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 28 2022 08:57 AM

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MANILA—One of the petitioners seeking to stop Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s presidential bid is alarmed by a poll commissioner's claim of possible "political interference" in the delay of the resolution of the disqualification cases.

"We share the concern of Commissioner [Rowena] Guanzon and again, we are very alarmed by this incident or development she has exposed yesterday," Akbayan party-list first nominee Perci Cendaña told ANC's "Rundown".

Guanzon on Thursday disclosed her vote favoring the disqualification of Marcos, who she said had been sentenced in a crime involving moral turpitude, which is one of the grounds for disqualification under the Omnibus Election Code.

She is part of the 3-member first division of the Commission on Elections handling consolidated petitions for Marcos' disqualification from the presidential race over a 1995 tax evasion conviction.

The petitions were separately filed by martial law survivors, led by Bonifacio Ilagan; Akbayan party-list; and Abubakar Mangelen.

Cendaña said Akbayan welcomed Guanzon's pronouncement amid delay in the decision of the disqualification cases.

The poll body earlier said its first division will rule on the petitions on or before Jan. 17.

"Nagpupugay kami dun sa katapangan at paninindigan ni Commissioner Guanzon para ipagtanggol 'yung katotohanan at ang ating electoral demokrasya sa kasinungalingan ni Marcos Jr.," he said.

Cendaña stressed that Guanzon's vote affirmed their claim that Marcos is not qualified to run for any public position.

"So, every time nagfa-file after 1995 ng certificate of candidacy si Mr. Marcos, nagsisinungaling siya kasi alam niya na siya ay na-convict o nahatulan ng tax evasion na merong parusa na perpetual disqualifaction from running for any public office," he added.

The group appealed to Comelec to include Guanzon's vote amid looming retirement and make a "just decision" on the petitions.

"We appeal to not just the ponente but the other members of the first division to heed their conscience and use Commissioner Guanzon's vote as both a motivation and a guide in deciding in favor of the truth and fair electoral system," Cendaña said.