BONTOC, Mountain Province – The three members of the provincial board of canvassers were recently charged by a registered voter for alleged violations of the provisions of the Omnibus Election Code (OEC) in proclaiming a substitute candidate for governor without expressed authority from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) en banc.
In his 5-page complaint affidavit, Salvador G. Liked accused Provincial Election Supervisor Julia Elenita Tabanguin-Capuyan, Provincial Prosecutor Golda Bagawi and Provincial Schools Division Superintendent Gloria Boya-ao, of an election offense under Section 261 of the OEC in the proclaiming Atty. Cathy Jyll Mayaen as substitute candidate for Mountain Province governorship in lieu of her late father Gov. Leonard G. Mayaen who succumbed to cardiac arrest last March 31, 2016.
Liked alleged the respondents violated the OEC because they proceeded with the canvass of votes for governor and thereafter proclaimed a substitute candidate whose certificate of candidacy was annulled and denied by the Commission en banc pursuant to a minute resolution.
“The denial of the certificate of candidacy of Atty. Cathy Jyll Mayaen-Luis is in itself a suspension of proclamation on the part of the Commission. The respondents should not have taken the law into their hands by disregarding the resolution which they received in the morning of election day denying the certificate of candidacy of the substitute candidate,” Liked stressed.
Further, the petitioner explained that the members of the Board of Canvassers (BOC) violated the OEC because without authority from the Commission en banc, they allegedly used another set of election returns or the results of the election returns, certificates of canvass and statements of votes in the proclamation of the younger Mayaen as duly elected governor of the province, emphasizing that it was only the late Gov. Mayaen who was the only candidate for governor printed in the official ballots of the province.
He argued that following the canvassing, he was the only candidate for governor appearing in the election returns, certificates of canvass and statements of votes, thus, these BOC were involved in alleged suspected corrupted discretion and gross disregard for the lawful order of the Commission en banc, for using the results of the election returns, certificates of canvass and statements of votes under the name of Gov. Leonard G. Mayaen, in proclaiming the younger Mayaen.
According to him the resistant and illegal acts of the members of the BOC constitute a gross disregard of the highest order of morality in the civil service. He further argued that these are highly learned heads of office in Mountain Province, and legally skilled enough to know that a denied certificate of candidacy is null and void and will not entitle a candidate any right, especially to proclamation.
Moreover, he revealed that these acts of the BOC in trying to position into the government a disqualified candidate resulted in the division of the people of the province, uncertainty in the province’s seat of government, hatred and chaos.
Liked argued that such, if not corrected, might avert progress, peace and cooperation among the people and officials of the province which was initially gained during the incumbency of the late governor before he succumbed to cardiac arrest.
In the outset, Liked claimed the members of the provincial board of canvassers of Mountain Province made up of two lawyers and a doctor of education joked with the country’s laws and reportedly insulted the Commission en banc and that such acts should not be tolerated, and an investigation and thereafter, prosecution should be immediately initiated as a warning that it does not pay to disregard the rule of law.
Earlier, Liked also filed separate administrative charges against the members of the board of canvassers with the Ombudsman for grave abuse of authority and acts prejudicial to the best interest of the service for proceeding with the proclamation of a substitute candidate whose certificate of candidacy was denied by the Commission en banc.