Twist in Sereno case: “impostor” congressmen should not vote PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 25 November 2017 14:13

KAKAMPI MO ANG BATAS

BY Atty. BATAS MAURICIO

LIFE’S INSPIRATIONS: “… `If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels’…” (Jesus Christ, our God and Savior, in Mark 8:38, the Holy Bible).

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TWIST IN THE SERENO IMPEACH CASE: “IMPOSTOR CONGRESSMEN SHOULD NOT VOTE”: Lawyer Melchor Magdamo, the former poll official who accused former Chairmen Jose A.R. Melo and Sixto Brillantes Jr. at the Commission on Elections of scams to the tune of hundreds of millions of pesos, is saying that around 38% of the 294 or so incumbent congressmen in our country are “impostors” who should not therefore be allowed to vote in the impeachment case against Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Aranal Sereno.

This thirty-eight percent of our sitting congressmen, roughly 117 of them, are barred by the so-called “SOCE” law, Magdamo said, adding that “SOCE” stands for Statement of Election Contributions and Expenses.

The SOCE law requires each candidate, since it was passed in 1985, to file their SOCE, and failure to do so will disqualify them from holding office, Magdamo disclosed in his post in the Messenger group “One Righteous Vote”.

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“ONE RIGHTEOUS VOTE” SEEKS RIGHTEOUS VOTERS AND CANDIDATES: “One Righteous Vote” is a movement of Church-based organizations and spiritually-oriented citizens seeking to find voters who will uphold righteousness in every vote they will cast to make sure that only candidates who are similarly righteous will have a chance of winning against moneyed and popular candidates.

Magdamo and I are members of “One Righteous Vote”. The other members of the group are former Bulacan Rep. Willie B. Villarama, who is representing El Shaddai, Born Again Bishops Jojo Gonzales and Juan Pring, and information technology expert Mike Locaylocay (see Kakampi Mo Ang Batas, October 17, 2017).

Villarama, Gonzales, Pring, Magdamo, Locaylocay and myself all believe that the country must encourage the citizenry to uphold righteousness in voting, which means not being influenced by money or gifts or by any other consideration in making a choice of who to vote for. Righteousness of a candidate should be measured in terms of his fear and love of God, as manifested by his lifestyle.

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CONGRESSMEN WHO VIOLATED SOCE LAW MUST BE OUSTED: Let us read some significant parts of Magdamo’s expose in the Messenger Group “One Righteous Vote”:  “An impeachment process is ongoing now in Congress. Many are not aware that at least 38% in the House of Representatives cannot legally perform their duty to vote for or against impeachment because at least 38% are violators of the SOCE Law…

“Starting the impeachment process requires at least 1/3 vote from the House of Representatives. Who may participate as voters in the 1/3 minimum bloc size? May SOCE violators participate as voters in the 1/3 bloc? The SOCE Law has been mandatory since 1985 but almost all candidates have been perennially violating it for more than three decades already until now…

“The SOCE law is clear in demanding that those who submit (their SOCEs) late `shall not enter duty of office’. The latest SOCE rules as of 2015 clearly state that Comelec shall not accept late SOCE submission no matter what excuse. In the 2016 elections around 38% of winning Congressional Reps are SOCE violators…” We’ll have more of Magdamo’s disclosures in our next issue, God willing, so keep on reading.

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