The Manila Times : BBM: Disqualification case nothing but trash

17 November 2021

By Bernadette E. Tamayo | The Manila Times

FORMER senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. has assured his supporters that he is eligible to run for president as he dispelled speculations that he will be disqualified.

"All pieces of evidence and legal arguments in our hands clearly show that the petition against my candidacy is nothing but trash," Marcos said on Tuesday.

He issued the statement to assure his supporters that his "fight to serve the Filipino people under a unifying leadership is impeccable and will get through misleading propaganda."

Marcos said although he believes that the petition before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to cancel his certificate of candidacy (CoC) for president was "walang kuwenta" (worthless) his lawyers were still preparing to oppose it.

"I've personally seen the documents for our defense," he added. "I've personally discussed them with our legal team who, along with some reputable and respectable legal experts, concluded without doubt that the petition to delist my name from the roster of applicants for the presidency is without merit and has no legal basis."

Marcos was referring to earlier views of former Justice secretary Alberto Agra and University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Law Dean Nilo Divina who said the petition "has no basis in fact and in law."

"Kaya nananawagan ako sa aking supporters at sa buong sambayanan na panatilihin natin ang pananalig na hindi magtatagumpay ang baluktot na hangarin laban sa aking pagtakbo (That's why I call on my supporters and on the entire nation to remain hopeful that the evil intention against my candidacy will not succeed)," he said.

Marcos added, "At patuloy nating ipaglaban ang karapatan ng mamamayan para sa malayang pagpili ng mga napupusuan nilang kandidato sa darating na halalan (And we should continue to fight for the right of citizens to freely choose their candidates in the coming elections)."

"The attempt to stop Marcos Jr. from joining the 2022 presidential race is likely to fail," Divina said.

He also said "the petition is bound to collapse once evaluated by the Comelec because it appears to be defective in form and offers insufficient legal basis to obtain its desired judgement."

Agra said "there is no legal ground to cancel the CoC of Marcos Jr."

The Ateneo law professor argued that the "petition has no legal basis and is unlikely to move forward."