Manila Bulletin : COMELEC affirms junking of petition seeking to have Marcos declared as nuisance

By Jeffrey Damicog | Manila Bulletin

The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) has affirmed its ruling that dismissed a petition against presidential frontrunner Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. which sought to declare him as a nuisance candidate.

In a four-page resolution dated May 11, the COMELEC en banc denied the Dec. 22 motion for reconsideration of petitioner Danilo A. Lihaylihay which sought the reversal of the Dec. 16 resolution of the COMELEC Second Division that dismissed his petition.

“The Motion for Reconsideration must be denied,” declared the COMELEC en banc in its May 11 resolution.

“A careful review of the Motion for Reconsideration reveals that it contains merely a rehash of Petitioner’s averments and arguments,” poll body explained.

It added the motion for reconsider “failed to raise new matters or issues, and the grounds that would warrant the reversal of the Assailed Resolution…”

Citing Section 1, Rule 19 of the COMELEC Rules of Procedure, the poll body reminded that its Rule states that: “A motion for reconsideration may be filed on the grounds that the evidence is insufficient to justify the decision, order or ruling; or that the said decision, order or ruling is contrary to law.”

Lihaylihay filed his petition on Oct. 12, 2021 before the COMELEC which was asked to declare Marcos as nuisance candidate.

However, the COMELEC Second Division issued a Dec. 16 resolution that dismissed his petition since Marcos did not fall within any of the category as nuisance candidate stated under Section 69 of the Omnibus Election Code.

“Petitioner utterly failed to demonstrate to the Commission (Second Division) that Respondent falls in any of the classification listed above,” reads the Dec. 16 ruling.

Among the points the COMELEC Second Division raised, it said the petitioner only “claimed that Respondent put the election process in mockery or disrepute because his purpose was mainly to have his family’s political comeback in Malacanang Palace.”

It also indicated that “there is no proof, much less allegation, that Respondent’s filing of COC (certificate of candidacy) causes confusion among the voters by the similarity of the names of the registered candidates.”

The COMELEC Second Division also stated that, contrary to the claims of the petitioner, “there is no act or circumstance which clearly demonstrates that Respondent has no bona fide intention to run for the office for which the COC has been filed, thus preventing a faithful determination of the true will of the electorate.”

“On the contrary, Respondent has sufficiently established that he actually has a bona fide intention to run for President of the country,” it stated.

The COMELEC Second Division reminded that:

“Respondent, who continuously rank as the most preferred candidate in recent Presidential surveys, previously served as Vice Governor, Governor, and Representative of the Province of Ilocos Norte. He also became a Senator and he was a candidate for Vice President in 2016. Additionally, Respondent is backed by a registered political party, the Partido Federal ng Pilipinas.”