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Partylist blues

Apparently, it’s time to update the old saying. If at first you don’t succeed, try and try again—but this time as a party-list group. Politics. It’s certainly more fun in the Philippines.

Posted: May 26th, 2013 in Editor's Pick,Editorial | Read More »

Why stop partylist vote count?

The Commission on Elections decided to suspend the canvassing of party-list votes late afternoon of May 14, purportedly because of “issues” arising from the inclusion of disqualified party-list groups in the ballot.

Posted: May 19th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

New partylist group vows to act for retirees

Our organization, Abante Retirees, has a noble desire to represent all retirees—whether soldiers, teachers or government employees—who have served our country in their prime. Few realize, however, that there has never been an active organization (like ours now, even though we are still a fledgling group) committed to work for more benefits, rights and privileges due our fellow retirees and the marginalized sectors of our society.

Posted: April 28th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

More on the new partylist decision

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The controversial party-list cases have been remanded by the Supreme Court to the Commission on Elections for review. What the Comelec is required to do is to decide two related questions: (1) Which organizations may participate in the party-list system? (2) Who are qualified to represent the party-list organizations?

Posted: April 21st, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Partylist system decrees inequality before the law

This refers to the column titled “The new party-list decision” (Inquirer, 4/15/13) of eminent Philippine Constitution framer Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas, S.J. As a layman, I saw Father Bernas’ explanation of the Supreme Court ruling slip into a case of “Catch 22.” Father Bernas explains that according to the ruling, the phrase “marginalized and underrepresented” refers only to those which by nature are economically marginalized; but then he justifies the inclusion of registered national, regional parties under “eiusdem generis,” but not necessarily in the sense of being economically disadvantaged.

Posted: April 17th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

Sad day for the poor

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April 2, 2013, is a sad day for the poor and powerless. On that day, our Supreme Court in Atong Paglaum vs Comelec decreed that the party-list system may now be invaded by the privileged and powerful. It is no longer the sacred domain of the marginalized and underrepresented.

Posted: April 13th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Experiment gone berserk

Some say that the recent Supreme Court ruling on party-list groups will open the floodgates for the rich and powerful to seize parliamentary seats reserved for the poor and powerless. Their fears are misplaced.

Posted: April 12th, 2013 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

SC decision anti-poor

The Supreme Court ruling on the party-list system will further strengthen elite dominance in Philippine politics. It will further “trapofy” Congress. Instead of giving space for the poor, the party-list system will now be a wider playing ground for the candidates of the dominant elite. The Supreme Court ruling has reversed the progressive and pro-poor intent of the party-list system.

Posted: April 11th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

Confusing purge

If the aim was to separate the chaff from the grain, so to speak, then all it did was to muddy the waters. And yes, those mixed metaphors are deliberate, if only to highlight the confusing absurdity, or the absurd confusion, arising from the Commission on Elections’ recent purge of the party-list groups accredited to [...]

Posted: December 4th, 2012 in Editor's Pick,Editorial | Read More »

Comelec erred in blocking genuine partylist from 2013 elections

The Commission on Elections has disqualified the Kalikasan party list from participating in the 2013 national elections.

Posted: November 14th, 2012 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

Party-list: Legislation is the solution (2)

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How are party-list winners determined? The Supreme Court answered this question in its very first decision on the party-list system, “Veterans Federation Party vs Comelec” (Oct. 6, 2000). Since then, several other decisions affirming and modifying this landmark case have come out, but the controversy on how to determine the winners persists.

Posted: November 3rd, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Party-list: legislation is the solution (1)

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Every election season, the party-list system always becomes a vortex of controversies. And yet, all the time, the controversies revolve around the same two basic questions: First, what and who are qualified to be party-list representatives? And second, how are party-list winners determined? I will tackle the first question today and will continue with the second next Sunday.

Posted: October 27th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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