SC affirms TRO on Comelec ruling vs Poe’s DQ

  • The Supreme Court has affirmed the TRO it issued earlier on Comelec ruling cancelling Senator Grace Poe’s certificate of candidacy
  • The high court also ruled on consolidating all the DQ cases against Poe
  • Among the dissenters in the SC ruling are the three magistrates sitting in the Senate Electoral Tribunal who earlier voted to cancel Poe’s COC

MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court has affirmed the temporary restraining order (TRO) on an earlier Commission on Election (COMELEC) ruling cancelling Senator Grace Poe’s certificate of candidacy (COC) for president.

Voting 12-3 on Tuesday, January 12, the SC en banc voted in favor of the TRO issued by Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno last December 28 on the two disqualification cases against Poe.

The Comelec First and Second Division has both ruled on cancellation of Poe’s COC on the basis of her questionable residency and citizenship.

Poe filed two petitions before the high court; one challenging a Comelec ruling favoring the petition filed by lawyer Estrella Elamparo, and another questioning the decision on the separate petitions filed by former Senator Francisco Tatad and Dean Amado Valdez.

The 3 dissenting votes came from Associate Justices Antonio Carpio, Arturo Brion, and Teresita Leonardo De Castro; the three magistrates who sit in the Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET) and who also ruled against Poe’s cases in the Upper Chamber.

The Supreme Court likewise ruled on consolidating all the petitions filed against Poe and has set the oral arguments on January 19.

“An advisory for oral arguments will be issued in due course. The advisory addresses limitation of issues, the order and duration of presentations by counsels, post-argument procedures and other related matters,” said SC spokesman Theodore Te in a statement during a press briefing.

The latest SC decision is expected to give Poe’s camp a sigh of temporary relief as this would mean her name will still be included in printing of ballots by the Comelec for the 2016 election.

However, her fate still hangs in balance as the high court has yet to argue and decide on the merits of the disqualification cases filed against her.

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