Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Comelec Allows Erap to Run For President

Today is the 9th Anniversary of the EDSA DOS coup d'etat. There is no lack of irony, I suppose, in the news just breaking that the Commission on Elections has decided to allow former President Joseph Estrada to seek the Presidency again in the upcoming May national elections.
"Let the people decide who will be the next president," said the resolution released by the poll body’s Second Division, junking the petition filed against Estrada by lawyers Oliver Lozano, Evillo Pormento, and Elly Pamatong last December. 
The controversy has been brewing ever since President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo pardoned Erap after his overthrow in 2001 and a plunder conviction, in which what figured most prominently was the resolution therein restoring all his civil and political rights.

It has been suggested that PGMA has allowed Erap to get this far in order to splinter the opposition (as if they needed help doing that!) and possibly derail the candidacy of NOYNOY AQUINO whilst secretly supporting MANNY VILLAR.

Personally I think she's thinking farther than 2010, when she will indubitably lose the reins of power, no matter who wins.  I think she is already looking with moist eyes at 2016, when she will be a young 67 or 68 years old, and may now be just as eligible to seek re-election to the Presidency as Erap.

Although Joseph "Erap" Estrada has lagged third in the polls behind Aquino and Villar, no one should count him out!  His mass base is largely intact and with a still fragmented field he can still become a decisive factor in case the race gels into a two man race.


Anonymous said...

What?? The COMELEC has been issuing stupid resolutions as of late. first the riling on ang ladlad. now this. can the supreme court overturn as well?

GabbyD said...

i dont get it. why...

Misalyn said...

Whoa...what? Having Erap as one of the presidentiables is complete stupidity.

baycas2 said...

there's still hope for the petitioners if they will petition the SC (and i hope they will) to decide on the justiciable issue.

all of Erap's (of course, from his lawyers) contentions appear flawed:

Estrada's 2010 Presidential Bid Revives Legal Debate

bottomline, however, is the fact that Erap didn't finish his term...

Fr. Bernas poses: "Is there an exception from the total ban in favor of an elected president who, for whatever reason, may have served for less than a full tenure? All I know is that no such exception was discussed or even proposed. There was no discussion whatsoever of length of tenure, but only of length of term."

let's wait and see
if the SC
still thinks that Erap truly
his duty...
albeit "constructively."

baycas2 said...

one of the links i supplied above is not functional...

snapshot of "Estrada's 2010 Presidential Bid Revives Legal Debate" here...

Jesusa Bernardo said...

"Let the people decide who will be the next president,"

Very fair to the people.

It was EDSA 2 nine years ago that's most stupid, not to mention, undemocratic....

Jesusa Bernardo said...

Now, I'm not saying that the Comelec itself is fair (Remember the 2004 Hello Garci).

It just so happens that the ruling itself is fair to the people. Why Comelec ruled in favor of Gloria? To allow Gloria's run in Pampanga less open to legal challenge.

In the end, or near end, EDSA 2 that deposed Erap came back to slap the faces of the gullibles one more time.

john marzan said...

the only candidate who can stop arroyo's potential prez run in 2016 is Aquino.

A Villar or GIBO victory means Arroyo will be speaker of the House and will get favorable treatment from the new administration.

An Erap presidency may only convince the CBCP and other powerful civil society groups to drop their recent objections to EDSA DOS people power as way to change government.

Jesusa Bernardo said...

"An Erap presidency may only convince the CBCP and other powerful civil society groups to drop their recent objections to EDSA DOS people power as way to change government."

They do? I don't think I heard them apologize for Edsa 2. At any rate, it's high time the people stop kowtowing to those powerful evil civil society but minority groups. Could be messy, though.

As for Noynoy stopping a GMA run for Congress, the two have a history of being in bed politically so what assurance is there that such won't happen again?

john marzan said...

baycas2 said...

Some interpreters like to understand the meaning of the Constitution to suit their needs and fancy. Some would like to make a statement ambiguous or controversial.

The keyword is “ANY.” As in,

The President shall not be eligible for any re-election.

So, an elected president (regardless if incumbent or not) is banned for re-election forever. Even a successor to the presidency is banned for life if he/she remained a president “for more than four years:”

No person who has succeeded as President and has served as such for more than four years shall be qualified for election to the same office at any time.

Anyway, the interpreters who made the Constitutional provision equivocal would be the ones to benefit from the ambiguity. And, voila, the Comelec 2nd Division yesterday submitted themselves to such flawed interpretation Erap’s lawyers had argued.

However, statutory construction (in interpreting laws) will dictate that proceedings during the framing of the law must be considered for the unequivocal understanding of such law in question.

It may be said that Erap is banned for re-election for life. The trouble is he maintained before that he didn’t resign and only the SC then made his “constructive” resignation because of his “abandonment” of the throne. Thus, Erap wasn’t able to finish his term…wasn’t able to make it past four years even (just to somehow equate it with the length of time a presidential successor will be banned for re-election).

The framers didn’t discuss whether an elected president who wasn’t able to complete his tenure of 6-year-term of office must be banned for re-election or not. The Constitution therefore is silent on this matter. By this reason, is Erap really banned for re-election?

Jesusa Bernardo said...

I'm aware of that, John M. But also consider that the bishops denied responsibility for Edsa 2, saying that it was only Cardinal Sin's decision to support the coup.

I did a report inspired by this DJB commentary:
On the 9th Year of EDSA 2 Coup: Former Philippine Estrada is Cleared to Run Again