Grace Poe on COC battle: I haven't been knocked out

MANILA, Philippines – It’s another blow, Senator Grace Poe said, but she hasn’t been knocked out.

The senator asserted she will continue aiming for Malacañang, even after another Comelec division canceled her certificate of candidacy (COC) for president.

On Friday, December 11, the Comelec First Division voted 2-1, granting the consolidated petition to cancel Poe’s COC.

Actually, masaya na nga ako kasi akala ko magiging unanimous na naman against us. At least meron tayong isang nakinig, isang tumingin sa aming mga dokumento at ako’y nagpapasalamat sa kanyang pagiging patas. Para sa amin, parang boksing lang ito – tuloy-tuloy hangga’t di ka natutumba,” Poe told reporters during a sortie in Tarlac, minutes after the decision was released.

(Actually, I’m happy because I initially thought the decision against us was going to be unanimous. At least one commissioner listened to our arguments, looked at our documents, and I thank him for being fair. For us, this battle is like a boxing match – we will go on until we haven’t been knocked out.)

That one commissioner is Christian Lim. The two who voted against Poe were commissioners Luie Guia and Rowena Guanzon.

In a separate statement, Poe also said: “We submitted evidence of my citizenship and residence, putting our full faith in a just process. It is sad that the Comelec First Division has chosen to ignore the facts just to deny me the chance to better serve our countrymen, and to also deny our people their choices in an open election.”

The senator told reporters there is a need to revisit the true spirit of the polls.

Ang eleksyon po nasa taumbayan dapat ang kapangyarihang mamili. ‘Di naman ito nangangahulugan na magtatagumpay tayo, pero dapat ang magtagumpay ang karapatan ng lahat na piliin kung sino ang dapat mamumuno sa kanila.”

(In an election, citizens have the power to choose. I’m not saying that I will win the race, but what should triumph is the right of the people to choose who their leader should be.)

Earlier, the Comelec Second Division – in a unanimous decision – also voted to cancel Poe's COC.

The senator can still turn to the Comelec en banc for a possible reversal and, as a last resort, the Supreme Court.

But she hinted that she would accept the final outcome even if it is not in her favor.

"Kung hindi man ako mabigyan [ng pagkakataon], ako po'y payapa sa aking sarili dahil para sa akin, narating ko na rin po ito. Nakakapag-serbisyo naman po tayo."

(Even if they do not give me a chance to become president, I am at peace with myself because I have gone this far. I am already serving the people.) – with reports from Camille Elemia/