MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles, Manila Bureau) – It’s final: Grace Poe can run for president in the May 9 Philippine elections.
Poe’s candidacy was challenged before both the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) and the Supreme Court because of questions on her citizenship. Her political opponents claim that being a foundling, she is not a natural-born Filipino citizen which is required of all candidates for president. The high court recently affirmed its earlier decision to allow Poe to run for the highest office.
But now, the Commission on Elections has disqualified another presidential candidate, former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas. Roxas is the standard bearer of the Aquino administration’s Liberal Party.
Roxas’ disqualification came immediately after an interview on GMA Channel 7 where he said that if he wins the presidency, the people can be assured that they are electing a president that is “110 percent Filipino.”
In an emergency meeting, the COMELEC unanimously decided to disqualify Roxas because he “exceeded” the required qualification for presidential candidates. “The constitution only requires candidaters to be natural-born Filipinos,” the commissioners said. “Roxas’ claim to be 110 percent Filipino is mathematically impossible, and it only means that he is 100 percent Filipino plus 10 percent something else, and therefore not a natural-born Filipino.”
Upon learning of the COMELEC ruling, Roxas vowed to elevate his disqualification to the Supreme Court.