Comelec: Duterte’s COC valid

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DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/08 December) — The Commission on Elections on Tuesday said Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s certificate of candidacy for president filed through a representative on Nov. 27 has met the requirements set by the poll body.

Duterte appeared at the Comelec’s law department on Tuesday to affirm his candidacy as standard bearer of Partido ng Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan in lieu of Martin Diño, according to a Facebook post on Tuesday by former North Cotabato governor Manny Piñol, a staunch Duterte supporter.

Duterte, who in the past months had always denied his intention to run for the country’s top post, declared his presidential bid in Dasmarinas, Cavite about two weeks ago.

A photo of Duterte holding his COC outside of the Comelec office in Manila went viral on social media.

Piñol added the poll body will hear on Dec. 16 a petition to declare Diño’s COC null and void for some “clerical errors”.

“The COC filed by Diño was titled ‘Certificate of Candidacy for President’ but a clerical error was discovered later in the portion which asks the position that the candidate was running for, which indicated the position of ‘Mayor of Pasay City’,” he said.

“It was a clear clerical error because the accompanying document to the COC was a Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance for President issued by PDP Laban,” he quoted Diño as saying.

In a video posted on inquirer.net, Duterte said he personally showed up at the Comelec office to clear things out “once and for all.”

“Many questions and issues are coming out regarding my candidacy. Once and for all, I came to the Comelec to ask if my documents are okay, if not, they can disqualify me,” he said in Tagalog.

The mayor added he asked if there’s a need for him to correct the COC filed on his behalf by his lawyer Salvador Medialdia, but the poll body said no.

“I will not lose sleep because I am not president, hindi ako mamamatay kung hindi ako presidente (I will not die if I will not become president),” he said.

On Monday, the Comelec Second Division dismissed the petition to declare Diño a nuisance candidate, citing it was “moot and academic” because he had already withdrawn his candidacy.

In a Facebook post, former Davao City councilor Peter Tiu Laviña, another staunch Duterte supporter, said: “Before going to the Comelec Law Department, Duterte listens attentively to the counsel of his lawyers during a ‘Stairway to Heaven’ conference, while members of the media patiently await for him along a corridor.”

Duterte’s daughter, Sara Duterte-Carpio, mayor of Davao City from 2010 to 2013, filed her COC for mayor as a substitute candidate for her father on Nov. 27. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)

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