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Comelec should shoulder storage costs of election materials kept abroad

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By Rey Panaligan

The Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) has ruled that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) should shoulder the storage costs of election materials kept abroad in relation to the protest filed by then Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. against Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo.

Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (left) and Vice President Leni Robredo (MANILA BULLETIN)

Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (left) and Vice President Leni Robredo (MANILA BULLETIN)

Composed of the 15 members of the Supreme Court (SC), the PET denied Comelec’s motion for Marcos to pay for the storage costs.

The PET set aside Comelec’s claim that the election materials like ballot boxes and other paraphernalia could not be shipped back to the country because of the tribunal’s precautionary protective order (PPO) issued in connection with the protest.

The Comelec alleged that because of the PPO the election materials could not be brought back to Manila within the required period and thus additional storage costs were incurred.

It told the PET that for New York and Hong Kong posts alone, the additional costs have ballooned to over P4.5 million.

In denying Comelec’s motion, the PET ruled that the tribunal did not prohibit the poll body from shipping back to the Philippines the materials used abroad in the 2016 elections.

“There is nothing in the PPO that prohibited the physical transfer of the election materials and paraphernalia since the Comelec was merely required to preserve and safeguard their integrity. Thus, the Comelec’s proffered reason that its faithful compliance to the PPO has no basis,” the PET said.

It stressed that “… the PPO is clear in that the Comelec and its agents were ordered to preserve and safeguard the integrity of the election materials and paraphernalia which could be done even if they needed to be transmitted to Comelec Central Office.”

It pointed out that in many instances the Comelec had moved and had been granted permission to transfer the election materials used in the 2016 elections to its central office in Manila.

Thus, it said, the Comelec could have simply sought the permission of the PET to ship back the election materials abroad but “the Comelec made no such request.”

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  • Duh

    Who cares ? Surely the Supreme Court has more pressing cases to deal with . This non productive political Circus seems to be endless !

  • SUPERBI

    pcso officers should resign immediately as they are failing the government and our president. they should be ashamed of themselves as they are not supporting the goals of our government in providing funds for government projects and other tasks for the people/

    • MAYPAGASA

      the pcso has good intentions in helping support government spending and funds for the people. instead the current officials of the pcso are involved in corrupt actions which do not benefit the government or the people. there should be a change in pcso officials immediately,

    • Simon antonio

      the pcso is a good source of funds for our government however it is not managed properly by the current officials. they should be investigated and removed from their positions immediately. we should not allow these types of officials to continue serving our government and the people/..

    • Emilio

      corruption must stop and our president is working hard to do this for the entire government. pcso is considered as corrupt as they are not providing funds for the government even if the people support their products like lottery, etc. the top officials of pcso must be pressured to step down and not allow our president to be embarrassed
      /

  • Liwanag Para sa Bayan

    pcso office is full of graft and corruption and should change leadership. they are failing the government and the good initiatives of our president. they should immediately leave their position and look for honest government officials who will take over and support our goverment
    ./

  • MAYPAGASA

    our president clearly indicated that he is not corrupt but pcso officials are still corrupt and not supporting the initiatives of the government. they should be investigated and if found guilty of corruption should be removed and punished according to our laws and our constittution,,

  • Simon antonio

    we have a very honest president however he is not getting the required support from his pcso officials. they should resign immediately and not stay any longer in their role as they are showing true support for the current government. corruption m/ust stop at all levels of government,

  • Emilio

    our president clearly asks for support for his anti corruption campaign. it seems that pcso officials are ignoring this and are mismanaging the operations of the pcso. they should be investigated immediately and in the meantime be replaced by people who will manage the pcso and get rid of corruption//