Mikey's party-list snubs Comelec, risks disqualification
MANILA, Philippines - The Commission on Elections on Wednesday said the Ang Galing Pinoy (AGP) party-list group of Rep. Mikey Arroyo could lose its accreditation for the 2013 midterm polls after snubbing a recent Comelec hearing.
Speaking to ANC, Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes said AGP failed to send a representative during the poll body's hearing on party-list groups facing possible disqualification.
"They did not appear, they disregarded our notices so our consensus is we are going to dismiss or cancel the certificate of Ang Galing Pinoy," he said.
He added that Comelec will make a final ruling on disqualified party-list groups before the end of September.
Brillantes said Arroyo, son of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, will no longer run in the 2013 election since he has already stayed in Congress for 3 consecutive terms: the first 2 as congressman of Pampanga, and a 3-year term as AGP representative.
"Bago ho ang nominees nila e. Hindi na kasama si Mikey Arroyo. If they do not appear, we will not be able to screen these nominees," he said.
The Comelec chief said AGP is required to submit documents and other evidence that they exist as a group that represents a marginalized sector. AGP supposedly represents security guards, tricycle drivers, farmers and small businessmen.
Brillantes also noted that AGP is the only party-list group that failed to submit evidence or send a representative to the hearing to ask for a postponement.
"A partylist must be a continuing organization. Are they holding meetings? If yes, where are the minutes of the meeting. Where are the statements of contributions and expenditures? All of these are requirements," he said.
He added: "They will not be able to establish this if they do not appear before us."
The poll chief said party-list nominees and even sitting party-list congressmen who are facing complaints are questioned about their personal assets during the hearings. "Mayroon diyan political parties participating in the party-list groups. E ang yayaman niyo, ang dami niyong pera, puro milyonaryo kayo, how can you claim to be marginalized?"