More party-lists axed, approved for 2013 polls

(Updated 4:36 p.m.) The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has released another partial list of approved and disqualified party-list groups as it continues its purging of supposedly bogus groups from the party-list system. The poll body has so far approved 79 party-list groups to run next year — 21 of the 170 new applicants, 25 existing ones, and 33 of the 44 incumbent party-list groups. But even then, Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said he still disapproved of some of the approved groups, adding he'd rather abolish the party-list system altogether. "I am not satisfied, if you're going to ask me. Ako mismo, gusto ko sana i-abolish lahat 'yan para wala nang eleksyon na party-list. Para magbago na tayo. Magsimula na tayo ng panibagong batas," Brillantes said, referring to Republic Act 7941, which legislated the party-list mechanism of representation enshrined in the Constitution. He added that this is the first time the Comelec has purged this many party-list groups. "This is the first time that there is a review of existing party-lists and we have reviewed plenty of them, one half of the existing." Brillantes said although he disapproved of some of the groups, he needs to adhere to the majority decision of the collegial body. Two incumbent party-lists that were disqualified are 1-Utak Transport Koalisyon, which claims to represent the transport sector; and the Coalition of Associations of Senior Citizens in the Philippines, Inc., representing the elderly. Brillantes said the Senior Citizens Party is disqualified for doing illegal term-sharing during Congress. The group's David Kho resigned December last year to give way for their fourth nominee, Remedios Arquiza. The Comelec then dismissed the group's petition to replace Kho with the fourth nominee. "Public office is not a commodity that can be shared, apportioned or be made subject of

any private agreement. Public office is vested with public interest that should

not be reined by individual interest,” the Comelec said in a ruling last July. "Ang final debate namin kanina, because they entered into an illegal term sharing arrangement. Hinati hati nila 'yung term. It's an illegal act," Brillantes said. An existing group, 1st Kabalikat ng Bayan Ginhawang Sangkatauhan (1st Kabagis), was also disqualified from running in the 2013 elections, while a new entrant,

Alliance of Organizations, Networks and Associations of the Philippines, Inc (Alona), suffered the same fate. Alona has nominated family members of

House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez -- Joanna C. Suarez, Danilo C. Suarez, Jr. and Alexis M. Abastillas-Suarez. Commissioner Rene Sarmiento said Alona is disqualified because of its links to the Suarez family. The longest serving commissioner to date added that the Comelec is "not perfect" in its decisions. "May kaunting blemise kasi decision making maraming factors na kinoconsider . But we tried our best to be faithful sa standards ng batas," Sarmiento said. Brillantes agreed: "We cannot have any perfect decision. We attempted to get what we can. We have reduced the party-list to 79 from an original 187." Meanwhile, existing part-lists that are retained unanimously are: Abante Tribung Magsasaka Act Teachers Party-list Advocacy for Teacher Empowerment Through Action Cooperation and Harmony Towards Educational Reforms (A-TEACHER) Agila ng Katutubong Pilipino Alagad Alliance for Philippine Security Guards Cooperative Alliance of Volunteers Educators Alyansa Lumad Mindanao Alyansa ng mga Grupong Haligi ng Agham at Teknolohiya para sa Mamamayan Anak Mindanao Anakpawis Ang Ladlad Ang Partido ng mga Pilipinong Marino Gabriela Kababaihang Lingkod sa Bayan Kabataan Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan All Filipino Democratic Movement Katribu Indigenous Peoples Sectoral Party Social Amelioration and Genuine Intervention on Poverty Trade Union Congress Party Existing party-lists that are retained with dissent are:

1-BANAT and AHAPO party-list coalition

Abakada-Guro

Abante Katutubo

Abante Mindanao

Abono

Adhikain ng mga Dakilang Anak Maharlika

Agbiag Timpuyog Ilocano

Agrarian Development Association

Agricultural Sector Alliance of the Philippines

Akap Bata Sectoral Organization for Children

Akbayan Citizens' Action Party

Ako Ayoko sa Bawal na Droga

Alay Buhay Community Development Foundation

Alyansa mga Media at Showbiz

Alyansa ng OFW

Alyansang Bayanihan ng mga Magsasaka, Manggagawang Bukid at Mangingisda

Adhikaing Tinataguyod ang Kooperatiba

An Waray

Ang Asosasyon Sang Mangunguma Nga Bisaya-Owa Mangunguma

Ang Laban ng Indigong Filipino

Ang Mata'y Alagaan

Ang National Coalition of Indigenous People's Action Na

Arts Business and Science Professionals

Association of Laborers and Employees

Bagong Henerasyon

Bayan Muna

Buhay Hayaan Yumabong

Citizens' Battle Against Corruption

Cooperative Natcco Network Party

Democratic Independent Workers Association

Kalinga

Kasangga sa Kaunlaran

Kasosyo Producer

LPG Marketers Association

Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta

Una ang Pamilya

Veterans Freedom Party

You Against Corruption New entrants that are given the green light to run in next year's elections are:

1-Joint Alliance of Marginalized Group

A Action Moral and Values Recovery Reform Philippines

Abante Retirees Party-list

Advance Community Development in New Generation

Ang Pro-life

Anti-Crime and Terrorism Community Involvement and Support

Append Inc

Association of Marine Officer and Ratings

Isang Alyansang Aalalay sa Pinoy

Isang Lapian ng Mangingisda at Bayan Tungo sa Kaunlaran

Isang Pangarap ng Bahay sa Bagong Buhay ng Maralitang Kababayan

Magdalo Para sa Pilipino

Mamamayan Tungo sa Maunlad na Pilipinas

Migrante Sectoral Party of Overseas Filipinos and their Families

OFW Family Club Inc

Ugnayan ng Maralita Laban sa Kahirapan The Comelec previously disqualified 109 groups and approved seven others, including the supposedly pro-administration Akbayan Citizens' Action Party, the left-leaning Bayan Muna, and militant transport group

Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON). Commissioner Rene Sarmiento said there are still 10 pending applications of party-list groups. — KBK, GMA News

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