Legally Yours,  Political Law

Aquino v. COMELEC

Aquino v. COMELEC

248 SCRA 400


Petitioner Agapito Aquino filed his Certificate of Candidacy for the position of Representative for the new Second Legislative District of Makati City. Move Makati, a duly registered political party, and Mateo Bedon, Chairman of the LAKAS-NUCD-UMDP of Barangay Cembo, Makati City, filed a petition to disqualify petitioner on the ground that the latter lacked residence qualification as a candidate for congressman which should be for a period not less than one year immediately preceding the May 8, 1995 elections. The COMELEC dismissed the petition. On May 8, 1995, petitioner garnered the most number of votes. COMELEC issued an order suspending petitioner’s proclamation. Petitioner filed a motion to lift order of suspension of proclamation. COMELEC declared petitioner ineligible and thus disqualified as a candidate.


Whether or not the COMELEC has jurisdiction to determine and adjudge the disqualification issue.


Petitioner conveniently confuses the distinction between an unproclaimed candidate to the House of Representatives and a member of the same. Obtaining the highest number of votes in an election does not automatically vest the position in the winning candidate. The electoral tribunal clearly assumes jurisdiction over all contests relative to the election, returns and qualifications of candidates for either the Senate or the House only when the latter become members of either the Senate or the House of Representatives. A candidate who has not been proclaimed and who has not taken his oath of office cannot be said to be a member of the House of Representatives subject to Section 17 of the Constitution.

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