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MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court has junked the disqualification and cancellation of certificate of candidacy (COC) cases against president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. The two cases were consolidated.
The Court voted 13-0 to clear the path for Marcos during their en banc session Tuesday, June 28, according to the Public Information Office. Two justices did not take part in the voting.
Justice Antonio Kho did not participate because he was a member of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) when they decided it at their level, while Justice Henri Jean Paul Inting also inhibited because incumbent Comelec Commissioner Socorro Inting is his sister.
Justice Rodil Zalameda is the ponente.
We have no copy of the ruling yet, and the press briefer released Tuesday did not contain other details except to say: “The Court held that in the exercise of its power to decide the present controversy led them to no other conclusion but that respondent Marcos Jr. is qualified to run for and be elected to public office.”
“Likewise, his COC, being valid and in accord with the pertinent law, was rightfully upheld by the Comelec,” said the briefer.
This removes the legal obstacles to Marcos’ inauguration on Thursday, June 30.
Both the disqualification and cancel COC petitions stemmed from Marcos’ 1997 conviction for failure to file his income tax returns (ITRs) for four years, or from 1982 to 1985 while he was vice governor and then governor of Ilocos Norte. The petitions all claim that his mere criminal conviction has perpetually disqualified him from holding public office.
Petitioners went to the Supreme Court after failing to block Marcos’ candidacy at the level of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
Lawyer George Briones of the Partido Federal ng Pilipinas, Marcos’ party, said in a statement they “congratulate Mr. Justice Rodil Zalameda for coming up with a learned decision that gained the unanimous vote of all the members of the court.”
Briones made special mention of “respected Senior Associate Justice Marvic Leonen who we esteem highly as a fellow alumnus of the U.P. College of Law.”
If you want to read a point-by-point discussion on the legal arguments of this case, read this. – Rappler.com