(Question VI, Political Law, 2018 Bar Exam)
Ang Araw, a multi-sectoral party-list organization duly registered as such with the Commission on Elections (Comelec), was proclaimed as one of the winning party-list groups in the last national elections. Its first nominee, Alejandro, assumed office as the party-list representative.
About one year after Alejandro assumed office, the Interim Central Committee of Ang Araw expelled Alejandro from the party for disloyalty and replaced him with Andoy, its second nominee. Alejandro questioned before the Comelec his expulsion and replacement by Andoy.
The Comelec considered Alejandro’s petition as an intra-party dispute which it could resolve as an incident of its power to register political parties; it proceeded to uphold the expulsion.
Is the Comelec’s ruling correct? (5%)
Under jurisprudence, in the case of party-list representatives, the HRET acquires jurisdiction over a disqualification case upon proclamation of the winning party-list group, oath of the nominee, and assumption of office as member of the House of Representatives. Rule
In the case at bar, Alejandro has already assumed office for a year and thus presumably have already been proclaimed and took oath. He is thus a Member of the House of Representatives. Accordingly, the HRET has jurisdiction over the issue of his qualification or disqualification. Apply
Thus, COMELEC’s ruling is not correct. Conclusion
(Notice: The suggested answers simulate those that a bar examinee may provide, and thus specific citations are not provided. Notwithstanding, in the reviewers, the bar exam question is answered under the appropriate topic which discusses the concepts and principles, as well as provide for specific citations. Accordingly, please refer to it on the reviewer or in the Library.)
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