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Mendoza is still Bulacan governor—Comelec

Posted on: February 12, 2010

Mendoza is still Bulacan governor—Comelec

By Anna Valmero
INQUIRER.net
First Posted 16:27:00 02/11/2010

Filed Under: Eleksyon 2007, Eleksyon 2010, Elections, Politics

MANILA, Philippines – Joselito Mendoza is still the governor of Bulacan, an official of the Commission on Elections said, even after a recount by the poll body showed former agrarian secretary Roberto Pagdanganan winning the 2007 elections.

Commissioner Nicodemo Ferrer clarified that the Comelec en banc’s 3-3-1 voting last February 8 that affirmed the second division’s ruling in favor of Pagdangan’s protest, was a tie and “not a majority decision.”

Ferrer cited the Comelec Rules of Procedures, Part IV Section 6, which stated that when the Commission en banc was equally divided in opinion, or the necessary majority could not be reached, the case should be reheard.

“The en banc promulgated the resolution to issue the ruling and the voting. Our earlier resolution, which contained a writ of execution ordering that Mendoza must vacate his post for Pagdanangan, is not immediately executory but an execution pending appeal. That is why we have a re-hearing on Monday, February 15,” said Ferrer when asked why they promulgated the en banc resolution.

If on the rehearing no decision is reached, the judgment or order from the second division shall be affirmed, Ferrer added.

In December, the second division ruled in favor of Pagdanganan after results of the recount and revision of the contested ballots showed that Pagdanganan garnered 342, 295 votes – 4,321 votes more than Mendoza’s.

The parties of Mendoza and Pagdanganan will appear next Monday in another hearing to present their memoranda before the Comelec en banc.

“Mendoza is still the sitting governor of Bulacan. Pagdanganan should wait for the final ruling to be issued by the en banc after the rehearing,” said Ferrer.

Police have been stationed at the Bulacan capitol to prevent Pagdanganan’s forced entry into the governor’s office inside the capitol compound and to prevent the clash of both parties’ supporters.

Pagdanganan said he should sit as governor after the Comelec en banc, in its promulgation, issued a writ of execution “directing the provincial election supervisor of Bulacan in coordination with the DILG Operations Officer to implement the resolution and ordering Joselito Mendoza to cease and desist from performing functions and to vacate his post as Bulacan governor in favor of Roberto Pagdanganan.”

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