Republic of the Philippines
1NETWORK MOVEMENT, INC. SC-GR. NO.________
Represented by it’s President,
eduardo de vera cadawan
commission on elections
Represented by it’s Chairman
JOSE A.R. MELO CERTIORARI respondent
COMES NOW, petitioner 1network Movement, Inc. duly represented by Eduardo De Vera Cadawan through the undersigned counsel in the above-entitled case, unto this Honorable Court, most respectfully states and alleges:
I. NATURE OF THE PETITION.
1. This is a petition for Certiorari under Rule 65 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure assailing the resolution of COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS (COMELEC for brevity) Second Division dated October 13, 2009 which is referred as Annex “B” hereof pertaining to the petition for accreditation of 1network Movement, Inc. before the COMELEC in the Party List System in the Philippines;
Wherefore, premises considered, this petition is hereby DISMISSED.
SGD. NICODEMO T. FERRER
SGD. LUCENITO N. TAGLE SGD. ELIAS R. YUSOPH
2. That petitioner was able to timely file the Motion For Reconsideration of such resolution of the Comelec Division. Unfortunately, the COMELEC EN BANC denied said motion on it’s resolution dated November 17, 2009;
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the motion for reconsideration is hereby DENIED.
SGD. ELIAS R. YUSOPH
SGD. JOSE A.R. MELO
SGD. RENE V. SARMIENTO SGD. NICODEMO T. FERRER
SGD. LUCENITO N. TAGLE SGD. ARMANDO C. VELASCO
SGD. GREGORIO Y. LARRAZABAL
3. That prior of petitioner’s knowledge of said resolution denying the motion for reconsideration, 1network Movement had decided to file and was able to caused the filing of MANIFESTATION OF INTENT TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM OF REPRESENTATION IN THE MAY 10, 2010 ELECTIONS by way of filing a motion to admit such manifestation which are referred as annex “E” and “D” respectively;
4. That petitioner is now assailing the propriety of the resolutions of the COMELEC in dismissing the petition and hereby raises pure question of laws and considering that there is no plain, speedy and adequate remedy available due to urgency in as much as the campaign period and printing of Ballots is about to start for the May 10, 2010 Elections, , hence, this petition;
II. TIMELINESS OF THE FILING OF THE PETITION.
1. That petitioner through it’s president had received by his househelper the assailed COMELEC ENBANC resolution denying the motion for reconsideration on November 25, 2009. However, during that time he was still in Region 9 convening the Board of 1network movement and it’s constituents for possible action on the pending resolution of the COMELEC EN BANC, the same was able to knew and read said resolution on the night of November 26, 2009 when he went home. Anyway, this petition is timely filed because it is still within the time frame allowed by law.
1. Annex “A” “A1-A36” - Petition dated July 22, 2009.
2. Annex “B” “B1-B4” - Comelec Second Division Resolution dated October 13, 2009.
3. Annex “C” “C1-“C4”- Motion For Reconsideration Dated October 24, 2009.
4. Annex “D” “D1-D2” - Motion To Admit Manifestation Of Intent To Participate In The Party-List System Of Representation In The May 10, 2010 Elections.
5. Annex “E” “E1-“E2”- Manifestation Of Intent To Participate In The Party-List System Of Representation In The May 10, 2010 Elections.
6. Annex “F” “F1-F6” - Comelec En Banc Resolution dated November 17, 2009.
IV. THE PARTIES
2. That petitioner as a sectoral organization is duly organized and registered under the laws of the Philippines represented by it’s President EDUARDO DE VERA CADAWAN of legal age, Filipino, married with residence address at Block 70, Lot 31, Yuan St., North Fairview Subdivision, Quezon City, where he may serve summons and other processes of this Honorable Court;
3. That respondent COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS (COMELEC) is a constitutional body tasked to administer, manage, facilitate and/or accredit political parties to include sectoral organization like petitioner and perform other elections duties and responsibilities pursuant to law duly represented of by it’s CHAIRMAN JOSE A. R. MELO, of legal age, Filipino with postal address at COMELEC OFFICE, Intramuros, Manila, where he may serve summons and other processes of this Honorable Court.
VII. STATEMENT OF MATTERS INVOLVED AND FACTS OF THE CASE
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4. That on July 27, 2009, 1network Movement, Inc. (1network for brevity) filed a petition for registration as a sectoral organization to be accredited by the COMELEC bound together with common interest and the primordial concern is the advancement and protection of the interest of the cellular phone users and internet subscribers, small scale sellers/retailers electronic load/cards and accessories for both, a certified true copy of the Petition including the annexes is hereto attached marked as annex “A-A36” made as integral part hereof;
5. That petitioner was able to prove and comply the jurisdictional requirements of the petition to include it’s existence and other factual issues;
6. That on October 19, 2009 petitioner received a resolution of the COMELEC second division dismissing the petition that in gist for two reasons, a certified true copy of which is hereto attached marked as annex “B” made as integral part hereof;
a. Petitioner is not underrepresented sector under the law because almost everybody owns a cellular phone or users of internet. In fact Congressmen and Senators are themselves cellular phone users and internet subscribers. Besides, there are agencies in the government tasked to monitor and protect the same, like DOTC and DTI.
b. Some of petitioner incorporators are businessman, lawyer and/or member of elite group/organization like jaycees and lions hence, far from marginalized.
7. That on October 28, 2009 petitioner was able to timely file the Motion for Reconsideration of the assailed resolution, a copy of which is hereto attached marked as annex “C-C4” made as integral part hereof, which in sum simply argued;
a. That the word underrepresented should not be literally interpreted as always a small group of society; to consider, it is not by determination of number nor by plurality but on the context that it deprives representation or to borrow the word from Supreme Court “proportional representation and lack of well defined constituency” (Ang Bagong Bayani vs. Comelec 359 SCRA 699). The best example, is the youth sector who shared a considerable number in our society but still they are part of the party list system;
b. That, while it is true, that our legislators are users of cellular phone or internet subscribers but their interest are not similar to herein petitioner because they focus on their concern and/or interest on their respective districts or constituents where they represent. Not to mention, that most, if not all of these legislators are post paid subscribers of cellular phone and internet connections much more that they are not small scale retailers of prepaid cards or electronic loads;
c. That simply put, petitioner seeks to classify cellular phone and internet users from post paid and prepaid or the electronic load on which the latter had been always the subject of controversy or abused to which this Honorable Commission may take judicial notice. Perhaps the Honorable Commissioners and their respective drivers are themselves cellular Phone and internet users but the former as postpaid users may have different interest/concern compared to their drivers because for instance the latter may from time to time will check the remaining load of their units and maybe some of them do not know how to operate an internet. In sum, most of the prepaid and electronic load users are in fact belongs to the marginalized and underrepresented as mentioned in section 5, of RA 7941; namely; labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, elderly, handicapped, women, youth, veterans, overseas workers, and professionals. Like CIBAC and APEC partylist, maybe some of petitioner’s members are professionals or businessman (but not the same as those living in Forbes Park) but still the advocacy and the majority of members of the organization are address to the marginalized and underrepresented sector(Ang Bagong Bayani vs. Comelec 404 SCRA 719). While these people may have a good number nationwide to include the small scale retailers of prepaid cards or electronic loads but no one dared to come out and represent them because of lack of well defined constituencies;
d. That while there are agencies tasked to monitor/protect these individuals like DOTC and DTI but these agencies belong to executive department and there is a need a counterpart in the legislative department that could contribute policy formulations and enforcement of appropriate legislation in the halls of congress that could benefit the whole nation. Like the youth sector; despite the presence of the Office National Youth Commission, Office of the Presidential Advisers on Youth Affairs, DSWD and other agencies for the youth and in fact there is a National Movement Young Legislators (NMYL) but still the youth sector had been recognized in the party list system act in order to contribute valuable legislation for the youth;
8. That when the said motion was pending and considering that the filing for Manifestation Of Intent To Participate In The Party-List System Of Representation In The May 10, 2010 Elections had begun, the Board of 1network had decided to file also such manifestation by way of filing a motion for leave before the Comelec, a copy such motion including the manifestation are hereto attached marked as annex “D-D1” and “E-E1” respectively;
9. That unfortunately, right after the filing said motion for leave and the manifestation when the president went home in Quezon City he was informed by his househelper that there was a letter of the Comelec and when he opened and read the same, it is a COMELEC EN BANC resolution denying the motion for reconsideration of the petitioner, a copy of said resolution is hereto attached marked as annex “F-F6” hereof;
10. That considering the proximity of the days to start the campaign period and most of all, the deadline set by COMELEC to finalize their list of candidates for printing in ballots use in the May 10, 2010, Petitioner believe that there is no other plain and speedy remedy available at hand due to urgency but only to raise these issues directly before this Honorable Court. After all, issue/s remains to be resolved and lodge before this Honorable Court are pure questions of laws.
VII. REASONS/ARGUMENTS RELIED ON FOR THE ALLOWANCE OF THE INSTANT PETITION.
1. The COMELEC erred and gravely abuse it’s discretion in a capricious, whimsical arbitrary or despotic manner in the exercise of their jurisdiction equivalent to lack of jurisdiction in dismissing and/or denying the petition for registration as accredited sectoral organization of 1network pursuant to R.A.7941 in relation to the decided case of Ang Bagong Bayani vs. Comelec et al.
2. The COMELEC acted without or excess of it’s or their jurisdiction when they overstep their authority in not appreciating the ground relied upon in the arguments of the petition and the Motion For Reconsideration of 1network.
VIII ISSUES TO BE RESOLVED
1. WHETHER OR NOT 1NETWOK MOVEMENT, INC. IS QUALIFIED AS SECTORAL ORGANIZATION AS PROVIDED IN THE R.A. 7941 IN RELATION TO THE DECIDED CASE OF ANG BAGONG BAYANI VS. COMELEC, ET AL.
2. WHETHER OR NOT THE PENDENCY OF THE PETITION FOR REGISTRATION, PETITIONER MAY FILE A MANIFESTATION TO PARTICIPATE IN SUCH ELECTION AND THE SAME IS VALID AND SUBSISTING FOR PURPOSES OF MAY 10, 2010 ELECTIONS.
1. That with all due respect, respondent COMELEC had wrongly interpreted the provisions of law governing the party-list system in our country. They simply argued that petitioner organization is not among the sectors listed in section 5 of R.A. 7941;
2. That respondent failed to consider that petitioner is a sectoral organization whose primordial concern is the advancement and protection of the interest of the cellular phone users and internet subscribers, small scale sellers/retailers electronic load/cards and accessories which clearly shows that the group had share a similar interest or concern not to mention that all the sectors enumerated in that law are also a potential members of the petitioner being a subscriber of cellular phone or internet or sellers/retailers electronic loads or cards thereof;
3. That while it is true that in the by-laws of the organization the primary consideration in extending membership is limited to mobile phone users or internet subscribers but it does not follow that petitioner is no longer qualified in the party-list system act. More so, that membership of the organization is not automatic but rather subject to the approval of the board. The fact that the petitioner had filed a registration for accreditation before the COMELEC for party-list system then it follows that it would adhere or bound to comply the guidelines set forth specifically that members thereof should belong to marginalized, then it wrong to assume or conclude that it is not marginalized group;
4. It is worthy to note, that in the decided case of Ang Bagong Bayani vs. Comelec et al, the Supreme Court even mentioned that verily, majority of its membership should belong to the marginalized and underrepresented. Hence, it admittedly that not necessary all of organization members belongs to marginalized and underrepresented. In fact, the COMELEC never disqualify the party-list of KASANGGA of Honorable Arroyo the sister in law of the President GMA, the likes of Palparan, Villanueva, Tieng and other notable personalities who have party-list organizations e.g APEC, CIBAC, or BUHAY;
5. That petitioner simply assailed the apparent abuse of discretion made by respondent by making a judgment by conjectures or speculation without legal and factual basis and thereby creating a special class of Party-list organization through their discretion;
6. That as clearly discuss in the motion for reconsideration being a member or officer of the jaycees or lions does not mean or automatic that such person belongs to an elite class. Those assumptions does not have legal and factual basis. To reiterate our position;
petitioner would like to emphasize that being a member of Jaycees or lions does not mean that it belongs an elite class, these are just civic and leadership organization therefore, the same is just pure speculation. The records will show in these organization that many of its members are belong or just ordinary employees of government or in the private sectors who are also relying the prepaid cards for their cellular phone and internet connections. Hence, the incorporators of the petitioner do not belong to an elite class;
7. That the businessman mentioned in that resolution is just an ordinary person selling/retailing electronic or cellcards and accessories far from the notable personalities mentioned earlier which the respondent had become deaf and blind on which such act is a clear violation of constitutional provision of equal protection clause;
8. That while it is true that a rich man may opt to choose a prepaid or electronic load for cellular phone and internet connection but the respondent failed to consider that it is still a fact that most of all prepaid holders belongs to marginalized. It is also safe to conclude that most of the cellular phone holders belongs to marginalized because as stated before the same is no longer a luxury but a necessity. Therefore the classification between a post paid and prepaid cards holders are clear indications of disparity of the living conditions of the people;
9. That with the advent of modern technology it is just deem proper that an organization (modesty aside) like herein petitioner will be accredited and be part of the party list system of the Philippines so that it can help contribute policies and measures that would benefit the nation. The petitioner would help safeguard the community from abuses not only from the providers but even the users. For all we know that this modern technology can help or destroy our society as it is already part of our daily life, like the activities in the different accounts in the internet which is called social media that clearly affects the life of the people, and this is one of the advocacies of herein petitioner.
1. That considering the petitioner was able to file Manifestation Of Intent To Participate In The Party-List System Of Representation In The May 10, 2010 Elections during the filing period set by the COMELEC the same shall become valid and subsisting unless the denial for petition for registration of the petitioner shall become final and executory;
2. That taken into consideration that deadline for purposes of printing
of the Ballots still on Last week of December 2009 it is the hope and prayer of the petitioner that the above-entitled case will be given due course so that 1network movement will be included in the list of candidates for party list system in the Philippines;
3. That lastly, the approval of the petitioner accreditation before the COMELEC is not an assurance or guarantee that this organization will be part of the next congress as still await the will of the people through political exercise. Why deprive such right to be a part of the system and let the will of the electorate decide the fate of the group.
WHEREFORE, premises considered, petitioner respectfully prays that an order be issued reversing the COMELEC resolution dismissing/denying the registration for accreditation of 1network and instead giving the due course thereon and thereby allowing and/or admitting the motion for leave filed by 1network paving the way of accepting the Manifestation Of Intent To Participate In The Party-List System Of Representation In The May 10, 2010 Elections.
Respectfully submitted this __ day of December, 2009 at Ipil, (for Manila City), Zamboanga Sibugay, Philippines.
ATTY. MARLO C. BANCORO
Counsel for Petitioner
PTR no. 1532749-1-5-09
IBP No. 04796 (lifetime)
ROA No. 46753
MCLE Compliance No.II-0006141
Purok Dahlia, Lower Taway
Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay
E X P L A N A T I O N
( Pursuant to Section 11, Rule 13 of the 1997 Rule of the Civil Procedure)
The foregoing pleading is being served through registered mail except for the filing of the petition because personal delivery is impractical due to distance.
ATTY. MARLO C. BANCORO
JOSE A. R. MELO
Commission on Elections
The Solicitor General
Office of the Solicitor General
134 Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village
Republic of the Philippines)
City of Pagadian . . . . . . . . ) S.S.
CERTIFICATION / VERIFICATION
I, EDUARDO DE VERA CADAWAN, of legal age, Filipino citizen, married, with office address at 1network Movement, Inc. Purok Dahlia, Lower Taway, Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay, Philippines after having been duly sworn to an oath in accordance with law, hereby depose and say:
That I am the President of 1network Movement, Inc. with office address at Purok Dahlia, Lower Taway, Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay, Philippines;
That I have been tasked and authorized by 1network Movement, Inc. through it’s Board Resolution to caused to prepare and file the petition for certiorari before the Supreme Court the assailed resolution of COMELEC EN BANC re: accreditation as Party List;
That in compliance thereof, I prepared and/or caused the foregoing petition; I have read it’s contents and the same are true and correct based on my personal knowledge and of the authentic records;
That I hereby certify that there is no other action or proceeding involving the same subject matter, issues, and parties pending in any other court or tribunal; and in case, if I learned of any action or proceeding involving the same subject matter, issues and parties pending in any other court or tribunal, I hereby undertake to report the same to this Honorable Court within Five (5) days from date of knowledge thereof;
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I hereunto affixed my signature this 4th day of December, 2009 at Pagadian City, Philippines.
EDUARDO DE VERA CADAWAN Affiant/Petitioner
LTO ID No. N27-02-006784
SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN to before me this 4th day of December, 2009 at Pagadian City, Philippines.