Senatorial candidate and Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao has been slapped with a disqualification case before the Commission on Elections.
Citing his number of absences as a member of the House of Representatives, a certain Ferdinand Sevilla, a resident of Makati City, submitted a two-page petition to declare Pacquiao a nuisance candidate for the May 2016 elections.
The petition, however, cannot be deemed officially filed because Sevilla failed to pay the corresponding filing fee of Php10,100 ($225).
“Records show out of 70 session days of the HOR from January 20 to December 17, 2014, Pacquiao had the most number of absences with only 7 days present. While Pacquiao was consistently absent to train for his boxing bout, shoot his television programs or shoot hoops in basketball games, he was denying his constituents representation,” according to Sevilla’s petition.
Also stated in the petition is that in 2013, Pacquiao incurred 60 absences out of the 168 session days, and was only present in seven of the 70 session days last year.
”He has failed to fulfill his mandate. He has wasted time, money and other sources,” stated Sevilla.
“That Pacquiao’s filing of COC for Senator in the upcoming national elections, therefore, comprises a sheer and shameless mockery of the election process,” he added.
According to the Omnibus Election Code of the Philippines, a person aspiring for an elected post may be declared as a nuisance candidate if proven that his/her certificate of candidacy “has been filed to put the election process in mockery or disrepute or to cause confusion among the voters by the similarity of the names of the registered candidates or by other circumstances or acts which clearly demonstrate that the candidate has no bona fide intention to run for the office for which the certificate of candidacy has been filed and thus prevent a faithful determination of the true will of the electorate.”
The eight-division boxing world champion filed his Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) last October 16 under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) of Vice President Jejomar Binay who is seeking the presidency in the coming national polls.