21 July 2010
The labor party-list group Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) lambasted the Comelec for consistently erring on very important questions on party-list representations.
According to PM chair Renato Magtubo, the Comelec is making contempt of its own not only by making self-contradictory rulings but also on making itself highly vulnerable to suspicions that sans propriety, these rulings are nothing but political trade off if not an outright fiscal transaction.
“Had Kasangga party-list still had Lourdes Arroyo in its list of nominees, the Comelec could have granted it the same privilege as that of Ang Galing Pinoy whose nominee is the former presidential son, Mikey Arroyo,” explained Magtubo.
The labor group said it was obviously the “intent of the Arroyos” and other favoured groups and not the “intent of the party-list law” that were considered by the Comelec in issuing this shameful ruling.
“When Lourdes Arroyo said she wanted to represent the small vendors in the 14th Congress the Comelec said she can. And when Mikey said he wanted to become security guards’ party-list nominee in the 15th Congress the Comelec said he can. They wished and the Comelec understood it as their command,” protested Magtubo.
He said Comelec’s favourable ruling on Mikey Arroyo is totally bereft of wisdom and perhaps deliberately planned to sow more confusion in the party-list system, undermine its real purpose, to give credence to those who call for its abolition.
Guarding against impostors
Upon hearing the news of Mikey getting the nod of Comelec, a group of security guards wanted Mikey Arroyo’s proclamation challenged not only in court but also in public debates.
Pilo Rosete, a licensed security guard with more than 15 years of work experience in the field, said, “An impostor can sit well with representatives of employers and landlords in Congress but not with underpaid, unsecured security guards.”
Omar Pescadera, another security guard, said Mikey has never experienced the grueling 12-hour shifts that we normally do and surviving on minimum wages. “Our work as security guards usually involve protecting property from being stolen by thieves thus we also do not want our voice to be robbed by frauds,” he said. Pescadera lives in Dasmarinas, Cavite and has four years of work experience with his last year working as a guard in Cavite although he has recently been unemployed.
Supreme Court refuge
The Partido ng Manggagawa is planning to go to the Supreme Court to seek relief not only on the qualifications of a party-list nominee but also on the disqualification of several party-list groups. The group is now preparing a motion for intervention on the case filed earlier by another party-list group seeking the disqualification of more than a hundred party-list groups that do not represent marginalized sectors.
“We believe that the question on nominees has so much to do with the nature of the party they represent. If a nominee is an impostor, the party is most likely a sham,” concluded Magtubo.