The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is now preparing for the proclamation of Shirlyn Banas-Nograles, who won as first district representative of South Cotabato in the last May 13 elections.
This after the Comelec en banc decided to follow the Supreme Court (SC) ruling in favor of Nograles’ petition against the decision of the poll body to suspend elections in the first district of South Cotabato.
“After the finality of the decision of the SC, the Commission shall proceed with the proclamation of Shirlyn Banas-Nograles as the winning candidate for the position of representative for the 1st Legislative District of South Cotabato, including General Santos City,” stated in the Minute Resolution No. 19-0932 dated September 25 but acquired by the media only on Monday.
The High Court has directed the Comelec to convene a special provincial board of canvassers (PBOC) to proclaim Nograles as the winning candidate.
Due to the SC decision, the Comelec also cancelled the October 26 elections for the first and third district of South Cotabato.
“That the Commission will not file a Motion for Reconsideration on the decision of the SC and accordingly inform the Office of the Solicitor General,” the resolution read.
Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas and Commissioners Al Parreno, Socorro Inting, and Antonio Kho voted in favor of the resolution while commissioners Luie Guia and Rowena Guanzon believed that an appeal should be filed and suspend the elections.
For his part, Commissioner Marlon Casquejo said the proclamation must have basis such as the Certificates of Canvass and Statements of Votes.
The Comelec earlier suspended the elections in the province after President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Republic Act 11243, which reapportioned the first legislative district of South Cotabato, leading to the creation of the lone district of General Santos City. (PNA)