56 electoral protests filed against House members

AMITA O. LEGASPI, GMANews.TV

The House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) has yet to be convened but it is already being deluged with cases of electoral protest arising from the recently concluded national and local elections.

A check at the HRET records showed that a total of 56 electoral protests have been filed against a number of House members whose candidacies or victories in the May 10 elections are being questioned by their defeated rivals.

The HRET is composed of six House members, who will be chosen once the 15th Congress opens on July 26, and three justices of the Supreme Court.

Chief Justice Renato Corona recently designated Justices Conchita Carpio-Morales, Antonio Eduardo Nachura and Arturo Brion as the SC component in the HRET. (See: SC announces revamp, new appointees in electoral tribunals)

The first to be filed was an electoral protest against Bataan Rep. Herminia Roman.

Leyte Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez, television host and wife of actor-host Richard Gomez whose own candidacy was earlier disqualified, is herself facing two protests. One was filed by her defeated rival, former Rep. Eufrocino Codilla Jr., and the other by a certain Silverio Tagolino.

Former First Lady and now Ilocos Norte Rep Imelda Marcos was accused by her opponent Mariano Nalupta Jr. of not fulfilling the residency requirement.

Two cases were also filed against Quezon City Rep. Vincent Crisologo, the first by Vivienne Tan, daughter of tobacco magnate Lucio Tan, and the other by Elizabeth Delarmente.

Former Quezon City Rep. Matias Defensor and former Quezon City Councilor Franz Pumaren also questioned the victory of Quezon City Rep. Jorge John Banal Jr. Pumaren’s complaint was junked, however, due to his failure to pay the P150,000 docket fee and P10,000 filing fee.

The protest filed by Ernesto Aspillaga against Makati Rep. Abigail Binay was also junked due to the failure to pay the fees.

Apart from these two cases, six others were also dismissed due to non-payment of fees, while two protests were withdrawn.

Former Manila Rep. Bienvenido Abante filed a protest against Rep. Rosenda Ocampo.
Former Citizens Battle Against Corruption (CBAC) Rep. Maria Blanka Kim Lokin also questioned before the HRET the electoral victory of Pangasinan Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil.

Former Bantay party-list Rep. Jovito Palparan Jr. also filed a protest against Bayan Muna party-list Reps. Teodoro Casino and Neri Colmenares. Bayan Muna and AnWaray are also facing a protest filed by Alliance for Rural and Agrarian Reconstruction Inc.

The others members of the House facing electoral protests are:

Monique Yazmin Lagdameo (Makati City)
Mary Mitzi Cajayon (Caloocan City)
Edwin Olivares (Paranaque)
Aurelio Gonzalez Jr. (Pampanga)
Joselito Andrew Mendoza (Bulacan)
Reps. Eufranio Eriguel (La Union)
Randolph Ting (Cagayan)
Wilfredo Enverga (Quezon)
Fernando Gonzales (Albay)
Marie Jocelyn Bernos (Abra)
Cesar Sarmiento (Catanduanes)
Nelson Collantes (Batangas)
Tomas Apacible (Batangas)
Elmer Panotes (Camarines Norte)
Renato Unico (Camarines Norte)
Anna Christina Go (Isabela)
Victorino Dennis Socrates (Palawan)
Salvio Fortuno (Camarines Sur)
Rogelio Espina (Biliran)
Milagrosa Tan (Western Samar)
Emil Ong (Northern Samar)
Jerry Trenas (Iloilo)
Lord Allan Jay Velasco (Marinduque)
Jesus Emmanuel Paras (Bukidnon)
Isidro Ungab (Davao City)
Mylene Garcia (Davao City)
Antonio Rafael Del Rosario (Davao del Norte)
Bai Sandra Sema (Maguindanao)
Tupay Loong (Sulu)
Nur-ana Sahidulla (Sulu)
Francisco Matugas (Surigao del Norte)
Maximo Dalog (Mt. Province)
Pangalian Balindong (Lanao del Sur)

—JV, GMANews.TV

12 thoughts on “56 electoral protests filed against House members

  1. LIMBONGAN

    BIKTIMA

    KAHIBALO BA KAHA NA MOSULTI INYONG AMO DIDTO
    SA KONGRESO NO? HE HE HE!!!!! MAAYO LANG MAN
    TINGALI MO SA PANLINGBONG, LABI NA NANG LAGAS
    MA-OT. WALA NA GYUD TAGDA DIDTO SA MERKADO,
    KAY HADLOK POD MGA TAWO KAY NANULAW NA MAN
    ANG PANIT, UNSA MAN DIAY SAKIT SA INYUNG AMO?
    ATAY NO? MAO NA KAY ATAY MANA SA WAKWAK?
    LAYGAYON TINGALI NA CYA SA GINOO.

    Reply
  2. vigilance

    EDITORIAL – Stealing the vote
    (The Philippine Star) Updated July 18, 2010 12:00 AM

    The Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, has received the protest filed by former Sen. Mar Roxas against Vice President Jejomar Binay. With a little over a week before the joint opening of the 15th Congress, 56 electoral protests have been filed so far with the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal. The Commission on Elections, for its part, has a growing pile of protests involving other races in the May 10 polls.

    Some of the protests are frivolous, and merely reinforce observations that in this country, there are only two types of candidates: the winners, and the winners who have been cheated. Rare are the losers who quickly concede with grace.

    But there are also candidates who are genuine victims of cheating or who have been wrongly declared as losers. As even Comelec officials have conceded, the country’s initial foray into poll automation was not without glitches. The poll body can use some of the electoral protests as opportunities to identify these glitches and determine if automation succeeded in completely eliminating vote rigging.

    Equally important is the speed in resolving these protests. The interminably long wait for the resolution of poll disputes has been one of the biggest incentives for poll fraud. Too many poll cheats have been allowed by a flawed system to serve nearly the entire term of the real winner. Even when the loser is wrongly proclaimed as the winner without resorting to cheating, the real winner gets no redress for the loss of his mandate. And a real winner who is a victim of frivolous protests must endure a cloud of doubt over his mandate until a protest is resolved.

    The bodies tasked to handle electoral disputes must set reasonable deadlines for resolving the cases. These bodies must also start imposing stiff penalties for vote rigging, including permanently barring the guilty from holding public office. When a vote is stolen, it is not just the candidate who is cheated but also the people who voted for him. Poll fraud is a crime against the people and the democratic process, and like all crimes, it must not pay.

    Reply
  3. vigilance

    The President’s Men and Women: Abad takes 3rd crack as Cabinet member

    By Aurea Calica (The Philippine Star) Updated July 18, 2010 12:00 AM

    MANILA, Philippines – It’s the third time around in the Cabinet for Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad, after being part of the official family of former Presidents Corazon Aquino and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

    Now, his marching orders from President Benigno Aquino III, son of Mrs. Aquino, is to make sure the government’s funds are spent judiciously for programs and projects that will benefit the people, the heart of the new administration’s “kung walang corrupt walang mahirap (there will be no poor if there are no corrupt)” campaign.

    Abad, who is a lawyer, said the basic problem of the government was its lack of money to fuel the many things that the President would want to do to help the Filipinos, especially the poor – the reason why the administration needs to be more stringent in spending.

    Entrusting Abad with such a sensitive and vital agency might have surprised some, but Mr. Aquino and Abad have known each other for quite sometime.

    The two met in 1984 at the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP), a non-government organization set up by the business sector for their corporate social responsibility projects.

    Abad said PBSP president Bienvenido Tan Jr. asked him to help Mr. Aquino, who wanted to be involved in their projects for the people.

    Abad then joined anti-Marcos movements and the people power in 1986 which installed Mr. Aquino’s mother as president.

    Abad served as Department of Agrarian Reform secretary of Mrs. Aquino while Tan was appointed as Bureau of Internal Revenue chief.

    Abad and Mr. Aquino were also together in the House of Representatives from 1998 to 2001.

    Under the Arroyo administration, Abad also served as education secretary.

    His stint was cut short in 2005 when he resigned from his post due to the electoral fraud controversy involving Arroyo. Abad and the other Cabinet members who resigned were dubbed the “Hyatt 10.”

    During this time when he was jobless, Abad made artisan wooden furniture from old and recycled wood.

    Abad returned to the political arena in 2007 as the campaign manager of Mr. Aquino when he ran for the Senate.

    When Mr. Aquino won as senator, Abad became his consultant and adviser while his daughter, Julia, became Mr. Aquino’s chief of staff.

    Julia is now also part of the official family of Mr. Aquino as the Presidential Management Staff chief. She is said to be the youngest Cabinet member at 31.

    The appointment of a father-daughter tandem to the Cabinet is also said to be the first in the country’s recent history.

    Seasoned politician

    Abad was first elected Batanes representative in 1987. He was re-elected in 1995, 1998 and 2001. He became president of the Liberal Party from 1999 to 2004 and is currently the vice president for policy and platforms.

    Abad finished his Bachelor of Science in Business Management and Bachelor of Laws at the Ateneo de Manila University and passed the Bar in 1985.

    A fellow of the Edward Mason Program in Public Policy and Management at the Kennedy School of Government in Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Abad also holds a Masters in Public Administration.

    Abad was a union organizer/trainer, research director of the Ateneo Center for Social Policy and Public Affairs, and a legal and management consultant with different local and foreign foundations.

    Expert in budget

    Now as budget chief, Abad disclosed that Mr. Aquino had asked that the names of the lawmakers who would receive Priority Development Assistance Fund or pork barrel would be published as well as how and where they spent it – including the amount of materials used in their projects.

    The contractors will also have to ensure the structural integrity of their projects or they will not be paid in full, Abad said.

    Abad described the President as an “expert” in scrutinizing the budget while he was still congressman of Tarlac and then senator.

    “That’s why nobody can make a fool of him when it comes to allocations,” he said.

    According to Abad, the President asked him to apply zero-based budgeting for the 2011 budget.

    “It’s a technique in preparing the budget, unlike the present mechanism which is called incremental, you don’t scrutinize every budget item. This time every item in the budget has to be justified,” Abad said.

    He said all the programs in the budget that should be implemented must be in line with the President’s priorities.

    Abad said the programs and projects would be evaluated based on their efficiency and effectiveness.

    Abad clarified that the Arroyo administration’s food-for-school program would not really be abolished but would be redesigned as part of the zero-based budgeting process.

    He said even if the money for the food-for-school would be re-allocated for conditional cash transfer, they still have the same objective, which is to encourage more children from poor families to go to and stay in school.

    Abad said leakages were discovered in the program and certain changes would be proposed on its mode of implementation in order to benefit people in a more targeted manner.

    “For example, we’re looking at consolidating the food-for-school funds with those of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program since these programs have overlapping beneficiaries and objectives. This would perhaps result in an expanded conditional cash transfer that would not only mean a more efficient use of resources, but would also be more beneficial to targeted recipients. Also, we are seeing that the Department of Social Welfare and Development is better structured to implement this program than the Department of Education,” Abad said.

    Following orders from Mr. Aquino to adopt a budget process that would prioritize relevant and effective programs, Abad said his department had been conducting a thorough review of various government projects in coordination with concerned agencies.

    “We encourage the agencies to look into the programs they are implementing and see which of these are aligned with President Aquino’s priorities and are really responsive to the needs of the people,” he added.

    Fund for disasters

    Abad said by being careful in spending, the Aquino administration was hoping to tap funds for more beneficial programs and projects as well as concerns like disasters brought about by typhoons and natural calamities.

    At present, Abad said the Calamity Fund of the government was already depleted with many more typhoons still expected to hit the country.

    “We will review our flexibility and see if we can re-align or re-allocate funds. Most of the calamity assistance (extended by the previous administration) was for Pampanga (the hometown of former President Arroyo),” Abad said, adding that this was another thing Mr. Aquino would not want to happen – for a single province to be a favorite and become the recipient of most of the funds from his office.

    For the remainder of 2010, Abad said their flexibility was already very limited because the government could no longer incur debt and the deficit would have to be kept at 3.9 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) so the money could be spent for various programs and projects.

    “By 2013 to 2016, the deficit can be two percent (of the GDP),” he said.

    To gain more revenues, Abad said the government would have to plug loopholes, especially at the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bureau of Customs.

    “We need measures that would not necessitate new taxes but generate income,” Abad said.

    Rationalizing tax incentives

    Abad further said the government was looking at rationalizing tax incentives. He pointed put out that investors would still come even without the tax holiday being given by the previous administration, especially if the business environment would be better.

    Another plan is to make excise taxes indexed to inflation.

    “When the prices of commodities go up, their taxes should increase too. It’s for the public good and public health because they are sin products,” Abad said.

    Tax rates of cigarettes will also be made uniform, unlike the present practice.

    “The classification (of cigarettes) is becoming a problem,” he said.

    Privatization and the selling of government assets, Abad said, was also one way to raise funds for the government.

    The President is also seeking to abolish and deactivate government agencies that are non-performing.

    “As we generate funds, we will also have to ensure that there is transparency and accountability in the use of funds. There will also be mechanisms for engaging the public like civil society, academe and business groups in guarding the use of public funds,” Abad said.

    Abad said the budget preparation, enactment and execution would all be done under serious scrutiny.

    “There will be updates on the releases, where they went, the physical accomplishments. What has been implemented with a certain amount will be monitored. If P1 million was released for one kilometer of road, then there must be one kilometer of road built,” Abad said, adding that his department was really established to ensure prudent spending.

    Reply
  4. Atty. Glenn A. Chong aka TRUTH

    MY FELLOW BILIRANONS:

    I STRONGLY AGREE WITH THE EDITORIAL OF THE PHILIPPINE STAR THAT IN CASES OF ELECTORAL PROTESTS, CONSIDERING THE SHORT SPAN OF THE TERM WHICH IS THREE YEARS, THE COMELEC AND HRET SHOULD ADDRESS AND RESOLVE THESE PROTESTS WITHIN JUST 6 MONTHS TO ONE YEAR TO PROVIDE A STRONG DISINCENTIVE TO CHEATERS AND THIEVES OF THE PEOPLE’S MANDATE.

    MAO NGA NING GARA ANG MGA LIMBONGAN UG PANGLIMBONG UG PANGAWAT SA ELEKSYON TUNGOD SA SISTEMA NGA DUGAY KAAYO MA RESOLBA ANG MGA PROTESTA. BUT WITH NOYNOY AQUINO AS PRESIDENT, WE HAVE MUCH HOPE THAT HE WILL NOT ALLOW A TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE TO PERPETUATE FOREVER OTHERWISE HE DESTROYS NOT ONLY HIS OWN LEGACY BUT THAT OF HIS BELOVED MOTHER.

    FOR US, WE NEED ALSO TO RAISE OUR VOICE AS A PEOPLE AND BRING TO MEDIA OUR CLAMOR FOR TRUTH AND JUSTICE. ONLY A MANUAL RECOUNT CAN GIVE US CLOSURE CONSIDERING THE COMPREHENSIVE, CLEAR AND COHERENT EVIDENCE WE HAVE PRESENTED AT THE LOCSIN COMMITTEE. WE SHOULD NOT STOP AND LET APATHY REIGN IN OUR HEARTS KAY KUNG MOUNDANG TA SA PAGKIGBISOG PARA SA ATONG KINABUHI, KAUGMAON UG PAGLAUM, ANG MGA LIMBONGAN ANG MAGHARI KANATO UG MAGLIPAY TALIWALA SA ATONG MGA KASAKIT.

    LET US NEVER FORGET, VICTORY CAN ONLY BE GIVEN TO THOSE WHO STAND UP AND FIGHT. WE SHOULD NEVER LET THE ESPINAS SUCCEED, TRIUMPH AND ENJOY THE FRUITS OF WHAT MANY BELIEVE IS A STOLEN MANDATE.

    SALAMAT KAAYO SA INYONG TANAN NGA NAGPAKABANANG KATAWHAN SA BILIRAN.

    Reply
  5. :-P

    to IDOL

    labaw! God Bless you idol. and may God protect you always.

    ___________________________________________________

    Nindot na unta to, president dili corrupt. sus! sangit man tas atong cong og gov daw. pwerte mang…lim****** na, cor**** pajud, hahaizt! mura mag package deal! =)

    Reply
  6. vigilance

    As I See It
    The Pimentel vs Zubiri electoral protest

    By Neal Cruz
    Philippine Daily Inquirer
    First Posted 23:12:00 07/18/2010

    Filed Under: Elections, Politics, Judiciary (system of justice)

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    THE new administration of President Aquino and the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Renato Corona should do something to speed up the wheels of justice in the Philippines. Even simple cases take years to decide; complicated cases become moot and academic by the time they are decided by the courts. This is tantamount to a denial of justice—both for the accused and the complainant.

    The Court itself cannot escape blame for this. In fact, it sometimes is the primary culprit in the delay of justice.

    Among the slowest to resolve cases are the Senate and House electoral tribunals which are composed of Supreme Court justices and selected members of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The politicians naturally vote according to their party affiliations, whatever the evidence presented in the election protests. The justices are expected to provide the balance and the justice, but they are in the minority and are always outvoted by the politicians. Too often, an electoral protest is decided by the electoral tribunals when the term is already over or is almost over. The victory of the protestant becomes an empty victory; the cheater would have already run away with the salaries, allowances and pork barrel of the position. Nothing is left to the winner.

    It is the tactic of political cheats to grab the proclamation, and hence the position, and then use dilatory tactics in the trial of the electoral protest.

    The latest election protest case decided too late by the Supreme Court is that against Rep. Joel Villanueva of the party-list group Citizens Battle Against Corruption (Cibac), which is supposed to belong to the youth sector. The high court ruled that Villanueva is not eligible to sit in Congress in his last term from 2007 to 2010 because he was already above the 30-year age limit for a youth sector representative.

    But Villanueva’s term is already over, and he was not ordered by the Court to return the salaries and other emoluments he illegally collected while he was passing himself off as a member of Congress. That’s one more case of justice delayed, justice denied, which is a black eye to the judiciary.

    Another electoral protest still raging is that between Sen. Migs Zubiri and senatorial candidate Koko Pimentel. Zubiri was proclaimed the 12th winning senator in the 2007 elections; Pimentel finished 13th. The latter filed an election protest with the Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET), assailing the results from 2,658 precincts in Mindanao, mostly in Maguindanao, home turf of the Ampatuan clan.

    Zubiri filed a counter-protest, questioning the results in 73,265 precincts all over the Philippines.

    To hasten the resolution of electoral protest cases, Rule 79 of the SET provides that the protestant identify pilot precincts which consist of 25 percent of the contested precincts. If in these precincts at least 50 percent of the votes are spurious, then the recount for the remaining 75 percent should continue. If not, the protest should be dismissed.

    Pimentel’s pilot precincts showed at least 50 percent spurious ballots. The recount overcame the votes attributed to Zubiri in the proclamation and gave Pimentel more than a 100,000-vote lead.

    Zubiri’s pilot precincts, however, showed only very few spurious ballots. But the SET resolution signed by seven of the nine members said: “It reasonably appears from the results of the initial revision and appreciation of the ballots and election documents in the pilot counter-protested precincts that Zubiri has a prima facie valid cause to pursue his counter-protest. Also, it was reasonably shown that the officially proclaimed results for the 12th senatorial position in the May 14, 2007 election would be affected by the disclosed anomaly. It is therefore warranted that proceedings in the remaining 25 percent of the counter-protested precincts be further conducted.”

    The chairman of the SET, senior Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio, and Sen. Pia Cayetano dissented.

    The view of the majority “is utterly baseless,” said Carpio. “Contrary to the majority’s bare assertions, the appreciation reports for Quezon City, Manila, Batangas and Bulacan show that the number of fake or spurious ballots in these areas do not constitute ‘more than 50 percent of the ballots’ contested in the particular city or province. In fact, the spurious ballots constitute a mere 2.2 percent of the total contested ballots in QC, Manila, Batangas and Bulacan….

    “The results of the initial revision and preliminary appreciation of ballots disclose that Zubiri’s net recovery of votes does not justify the conduct of further proceedings in this case,” Carpio added. “Accordingly, I vote to dismiss the counter-protest filed by Juan Miguel F. Zubiri.”

    Senator Cayetano concurred in Carpio’s dissenting opinion. “Rule 79 provides for a speedy and accurate process. The decision of the majority will result in further delay, effectively thwarting the will of the people.”

    It took the SET three years (half of the six-year term of the senators) to examine the ballots in 20,885 contested precincts. The revision of the ballots in the remaining 52,380 non-pilot precincts, representing 75 percent of the total number of contested precincts in Zubiri’s counter-protest, will surely take more than six years assuming the same pace of revision. The term of the senator would be over by the time the revision is finished.

    “This defeats the very purpose of designating 25 percent of the contested precincts as pilot, that is, to dismiss the protest or counter-protest if the results of the 25 percent pilot precincts show no improbability to overcome the opponent’s lead,” Carpio concluded.

    However, the majority decision will still have to be obeyed.

    Reply
  7. mmm

    Mao lang na ang gi hingyap sa katawhan sa biliran nga madayon ang manual recount, dawat man ko ug kapildihan ni Atty. basta klaro lang pud, sus kung mabaliktad ang result sa pag open sa balota daghan gyud manlayas diri sa B iliran, di gyud mi musugot nga ang mag hari ang mga KAWATAN …

    Reply
  8. BIKTIMA hi saul ngan 2 k cidg

    ATTY.CHONG,

    TALINGUHA JUD NGA KABALIK PAKA SULOD UG 6 KA BULAN SA IMONG PWESTO, KAY KUNG DILI GANI? LISOD NA JUD KA MAKAATIK SA IMONG MGA TIG SUPORTA SA ISLA…WALA NA ANG 5 ka toyota ka fortuner, LISOD NANA KADAGAN GAMIT ANG INYONG GANANSYA SA KAGALSTOAN SA KRUDO…

    UG ATENDERE POD INTAWON ANG INYONG GIPANAMPANG MGA KASO NILA spo2 saul ug 2 ka cidg? MURAG WALA NAMAN LANG KA NAGPAKABANA SA INYONG NAHIAGUMAN NGA ambush? INSULTO NA IMONG PAMILYA NGA biktima ug krimen KAHUMAN ANG GI deny o na delay ang inyong pagkuha ug hustisya sa korte?

    Reply
  9. abussayaff

    biktima

    grabe man nimo pagkadaot ni cong. glen chong. unsa man imo pagtan.aw nya? nakaminos ka cguro ano. bisag ikaw biktima kumayingking kara ni congressman glen. usa pod imo mga blogs puro balik2x unya paka daot. mura kanala sa imo mga amo na mga peke na congressman roger, mayor pawiks, og vice mayor adik hasta pa ang gov. na doble baid.hahahaha.

    Reply
  10. :-P

    biktima para nis imo:

    zubiri=fake senator

    roger lim=fake congressman

    gerry girl lim=fake governor
    _____________________________________________________

    sunod lists nasad sa 15/30.. magduwa ta ug FIND YOUR NAME HERE..hehehe

    Reply
  11. san juan

    BIKTIMA ikaw ang asawa ni SAUL pag kalo-oy nimO INDAY sa kadag han sa do ulan di ha ka sa DEMONYO nga pamilya na ngayo tabang..nag pagamit kapa niana nga pamilya.. sayod kami mga taga NAVAL daghan mga kreminal nga ila gi pasaligan maka gawas kon cla modaog mao deli gayod kamo mag palamposon…

    Reply

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