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Aquino vs.

COMELEC
GR No. 120265 – Kapunan, J.

Facts:

 March 20, 1995 – Petitioner filed his Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) for the position of
Makati 2nd District Representative
 April 24, 1995 – a petition to disqualify was filed against petitioner by Mateo Bedon on
the ground that he lacked the residency qualification as candidate for congressman
under Sec. 6, Art. VI of the Constitution which should be for a period not less than 1 year
immediately preceding the May 8, 199 elections.
 May 6, 1995 – COMELEC 2nd Division promulgated a Resolution dismissing the petition
for disqualification against petitioner
 May 7, 1995 – Bedon filed a motion for reconsideration of the COMELEC resolution to
the COMELEC en banc
 May 8, 1995 – Elections were held for the 2 nd legislative district of Makati City with the
following results:

Agapito Aquino – 38,547 votes Agusto Syjuco – 35,910 votes

 May 15, 1995 – COMELEC en banc issued an Order suspending petitioner’s


proclamation
 June 2, 1995 – COMELEC en banc reversed the 2nd Division’s resolution and GRANTS
the petition for disqualification against petitioner for lack of the constitutional qualification
of residence.
 Petitioner argues that after the May 8, 1995 elections, the COMELEC lost its jurisdiction
over the question of petitioner’s qualifications to run for member of the House of
Representatives and instead claims that jurisdiction now lie with the HRET.

Issue: Whether or not COMELEC has jurisdiction to rule on the disqualification of the petitioner
after the elections

Ruling:

 The HRET assumes jurisdiction over all contests relative to election, returns and
qualifications of candidates only when the candidate becomes a member of the House of
Representatives.
 A candidate who has not been proclaimed and who has not taken his oath of office
cannot be considered as a member of the House. Petitioner has not yet been proclaimed
and has not taken his oath. He is not a member yet of the House of Representatives.
 Sec. 6 in relation to Sec. 7 of RA 6646 empowers the COMELEC to continue to hear and
decide questions relating to qualifications of candidates:

Sec. 6. Effect of Disqualification Case. — Any candidate, who has been declared by final
judgment to be disqualified shall not be voted for, and the votes cast for him shall not be
counted. If for any reason a candidate is not declared by final judgment before an election to
be disqualified and he is voted for and receives the winning number of votes in such election,
the Court or Commission shall continue with the trial and hearing of the action, inquiry or
protest and, upon motion of the complainant or any intervenor, may during the pendency
thereof order the suspension of the proclamation of such candidate whenever the evidence
of guilt is strong.

Sec. 7. Petition to Deny Due Course or to Cancel a Certificate of Candidacy. — The


procedure hereinabove provided shall apply to petition to deny due course to or cancel a
certificate of candidacy based on Sec. 78 of Batas Pambansa 881.

 Section 7 of RA 6646 allows the application of the provisions of Section 6 to cases involving
disqualification based on ineligibility under Section 78 of BP 881.

Sec. 78. Petition to deny due course to or cancel a certificate of candidacy. - A


verified petition seeking to deny due course or to cancel a certificate of candidacy may
be filed by the person exclusively on the ground that any material representation
contained therein as required under Section 74 hereof is false.

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