The Commission on Elections

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  1.  The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) is the premier guardian of the ballot. Its principal role is to enforce and administer all laws and regulations relative to the conduct of elections, plebiscites, initiatives, referendums and recalls. The periodic political exercises give meaning to our declaration in the Constitution that Sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them.  2.   G 3.   F 4.  Election Protest - refers to an election contest relating to the election and returns of elective officials, grounded on frauds or irregularities in the conduct of the elections, the casting and counting of the ballots and the preparation and canvassing of returns. The issue is who obtained the plurality of valid votes cast.  5.   Effect of a Disqualification case (under RA 6646)  1.   Any candidate who has been declared by final judgment to be disqualified shall NOT be voted for. The votes cast in his favor shall not be counted. 2.   If the candidate is not disqualified by final judgment before the election and receives the highest number of votes in the election, the court or COMELEC will continue with the trial and hearing of the action, inquiry or protest. Upon motion of the complainant or intervenor, the court or COMELEC may order the suspension of the proclamation of the candidate whenever the evidence of his guilt is strong. 6.   A.)  Candidates for punong barangay must be eighteen years of age, bona fide citizens of the Philippines and have at least six months' residency in the concerned barangay prior to the election. They must also be literate, have no criminal records, be mentally fit and knowledgeable of the Philippine law. All individuals who have been declared insane or have been sentenced for corruption, rebellion or have received any sanction of more than eighteen months will be automatically disqualified    b.) The qualifications for membership in the Senate are expressly stated in Section 3, Art. VI of the 1987 Philippine Constitution as follows:    No person shall be a Senator unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, and on the day of the election, is at least thirty-five years of age, able to read and write, a registered voter, and a resident of the Philippines for not less than two years immediately preceding the day of the election.    It is worthy to note that the age is fixed at 35 and must be possessed on the day of the elections, that is, when the polls are opened and the votes cast, and not on the day of the proclamation of the winners by the board of canvassers.    With regard to the residence requirement, it was ruled in the case of Lim v. Pelaez   that it must be the place where one habitually resides and to which he, after absence, has the intention of returning.    The enumeration laid down by the 1987 Philippine Constitution is exclusive under the Latin principle of   expressio unius est exclusio alterius . This means that Congress cannot anymore add additional qualifications other than those provided by the 1987 Philippine Constitution.  C.  To be able to run for office as a Member of the House, a person should be a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, not less   than twenty-five years old on the day of the elections, and able to read and write. Candidates for district representatives should be registered voters in the districts where they are running for office, and should have resided in those districts for at least one year immediately before the day of the election.  d.  According to the 1987 constitution, to be able to run for the office of President of the Philippines, a person must be a registered voter, at least forty years of age, able to read and write, a Filipino citizen by birth, and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately before the election. The president is directly elected by plurality vote of qualified voters in an   election held on the second Monday of May. Election returns are duly certified by each province or city and transmitted to Congress, which canvasses the votes in joint session. In cases when two or more candidates have an equal number of votes, Congress, voting separately, shall choose one of them by majority vote. In case of disputes, the Supreme Court,   sitting en banc, shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of the President.<ref name= test1 > 1987 Constitution of the Philippines (accessed November 19, 2007) e.    Article VII Section 3 of the 1987 Philippine Constitution mandates the existence of a Vice-President who shall have the same qualifications and term of office and be elected with, and in the same manner, as the President. The Vice President may be removed from the position in the same manner as the President, and can be appointed as a Member of the Cabinet. He/She also assumes the duties and responsibilities of the President (as  Acting President  ) if (1) the position of the latter has not yet been chosen, until such has been chosen and qualified, (2) the latter has died or became permanently disabled, and will serve the unexpired term, and/or (3) the Members of the Cabinet submits to the Senate President and the House Speaker a written declaration that the President is unable to effect his reponsibilites and duties.  8. 9. 10. Chairman and the Commissioners shall be appointed by the President with the consent of the Commission on  Appointments for a term of seven years without reappointment. Of those first appointed, three Members shall hold office for seven years, two Members for five years, and the last Members for three years, without reappointment. Appointment to any vacancy shall be only for the unexpired term of the predecessor. In no case shall any Member be appointed or designated in a temporary or acting capacity.  
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