Abolish Useless Party List System in the Philippines

The Supreme Court (SC) has given the Commission on Elections (Comelec) the “green light” to rule out the Alliance for Barangay Concerns Party (ABC) in the party-list groups, whose nominees will occupy seats available for marginalized sectors in the House of Representatives.

In an en banc ruling signed by Clerk of Court Atty. Enriqueta Vidal, the SC denied the petition filed by the ABC party-list group.

The SC upheld the resolution of the Comelec en banc dated Oct. 11, 2011, canceling the registration and accreditation of the ABC party-list group.

It also lifted the status quo ante order it issued on Nov. 22, 2011.

The ABC party-list group is advocating principles and practices of governance that help build and nurture livable, sustainable, productive and economically vibrant local communities.

It has been an accredited political party-list group in the Philippines and participated during the 2007 and 2010 elections, respectively.

However, on May 25, 2010, Atty. Melanio Mauricio, Jr. filed a petition before the Comelec to cancel ABC’s registration and accreditation.

Mauricio argued that it was an adjunct or front of The Children of God International, a religious organization popularly known as “Ang Dating Daan”, because its first nominee was Arnulfo Molero, a known top official of the religious sect.

Ang Dating Daan allegedly used its financial and manpower resources to campaign nationwide for ABC.

Mauricio’s petition was first denied, but was eventually reinstated when he filed a motion for reconsideration (MR).

On Oct. 11, 2011, ABC’s registration and accreditation was cancelled, until the case was elevated to the SC.

In affirming the Comelec ruling, the SC said that “it will not interfere with its exercise of [its] prerogative so long as the parties are amply heard on their opposing claims.”

The SC found “nothing outrageously wrong with the Comelec’s resort to a summary proceeding.”

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