BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) admitted the current status of the proclaimed substitute of the late Mountain Province Gov. Leonard G. Mayaen is a tickles legal issue that could go up to the Supreme Court (SC) in order to enhance the jurisprudence relative to the said issue.
Lawyer Ederlino Tabilas, COMELEC-CAR regional director, said the proclamation of lawyer Cathy Jill Mayaen-Luis, daughter of the late Gov. Mayaen, as substitute for his father for the position of governor remains valid until annulled by the Commission en banc.
“The proclamation of Atty. Mayaen as substitute for his father for governor will remain valid until annulled. The matter will now be up to the Commission to decide considering that there are no existing jurisprudence that will govern the said issue at hand,” Tabilas stressed.
It can be recalled that the younger Mayaen filed her petition for substitution in the afternoon of May 5, 2016 in lieu of her father who succumbed to cardiac arrest last March 31, 2016.
However, the Commission en banc issued a minute resolution on May 7, 2016 denying the petition for substitution filed by the substitute which was received by the regional office on May 8, 2016 and later transmitted to the Mountain Province provincial election office on election day for information and guidance.
On May 10, 2016, the Mountain Province provincial board of canvassers by virtue of a majority vote of the members decided to continue the proclamation of Atty. Mayaen as substitute for her father for the position of governor. Provincial Election Supervisor Julia Elenita Tabangin-Capuyan decided not to vote for the proclamation but Provincial Prosecutor Glenda Bagawi and Provincial Schools Superintendent Gloria Boya-ao voted to continue with the proclamation of the substitute.
According to the COMEC-CAR official, the facts of the case does not show any aggrieved party, thus, any registered voter could question the decision of the provincial board of canvassers before the Commission en banc.
Under the usual procedures, a petition questioning the proclamation will be raffled to a division which is obligated to render a ruling on the matter. The decision of the division is appealable to the Commission en banc and such decision to be rendered by the en banc will be final and executor unless restrained by the Supreme Court on grounds of grave abuse of authority.
He said in fairness to the provincial election supervisor, she voted to follow the decision of the Commission en banc but she was prevailed upon by the other members of the board of canvassers.
Tabilas explained the matter will be forwarded to the Commission en banc and it will be up to the Commissioners to render a decision whether or not to sustain the proclamation that will pave the way for the oathtaking of the younger Mayaen as substitute for her father by noon of June 30, 2016 as the next governor of the province.
The late Mayaen, whose name was in the official ballots for Mountain Province, was able to get 60,684 votes from the different polling precincts provincewide.
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Refer to Alpine L. Killa