Why Reyes wants 3 SC justices out of HRET

Posted at 09/05/14 6:29 PM

MANILA - Marinduque Representative Regina Reyes wants three Supreme Court (SC) justices sitting in the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) to be replaced.

"Hindi po kasi fair o patas ang labanan sa HRET," Reyes told radio dzMM on Friday.

Reyes, who won in the 2013 congressional race in Marinduque, had been disqualified by the high court on the basis of her alleged US citizenship.

The high court, in its ruling, affirmed the decision of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to disqualify her for her supposed failure to renounce her American citizenship as required of candidates with dual citizenship.

But Reyes found the SC's ruling questionable since one of its justices, Presbitero Velasco, is the father of her opponent Lord Allan Velasco.

She also said that the HRET, and not the SC, should be the one to decide on electoral contests.

However, the chairman of the HRET is Velasco. Two other justices sitting in the HRET are also "biased" against her, she said.

Those are the reasons why she wants Velasco, Justice Lucas Bersamin, who had decided against her and in favor of Comelec last year, and Justice Diosdado Peralta to be replaced in the HRET.

"Para po walang bias," Reyes said.

She said she had filed a petition before the SC seeking the replacement of the three justices. But on August 26, she heard news reports that her petition had already been denied.

"Pero wala po kaming natatanggap na notice, yung aming abogado (Atty. Harry Roque), hanggang ngayon po," she said.

Reyes is now appealing to Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno to hear her grievances.

She said she is ready to present evidence and prove to everyone that she is Filipino.

"Talagang nagmamakaawa po ako na bigyan po natin ng kahulugan ang ibig sabihin ng katarungan sa ating bayan," she said.

"Humihingi lang po ako ng due process. Yung respeto sa proseso para ipakita na ako'y Pilipino. Yun lang po. Yung pagkakataon lang po," Reyes added.